For some of us, the holidays can be a time of extreme stress or unpleasant memories – but it doesn’t have to be that way. You have the power to create your own holiday traditions and make this a time of peace and joy.

Jesus is the reason for this entire holiday season! With this perspective in mind, you can take practical steps to relieve holiday stressors, avoid negative family situations, and even boost your immune system to reduce the likelihood of getting sick.

You can create and enjoy traditions that focus on the people you love and build beautiful memories for your family. Today, we’ll share practical tips on how to do that. We’ll discuss how we overcome difficult family holiday struggles and how we approach the holidays with an attitude of gratitude.

Then, we’ll teach you the first 2 of 5 healthy habits that can help you thrive in the holiday season. Learn what you can do today to break the cycle of stressful holidays and enjoy Happy, Healthy Holidays this Season!

Listen & Watch Natural Living Family Podcast Episode 44 : Healthy, Happy Holidays

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Click Here to Read the Transcript - Healthy, Happy Holidays, Part 1

Natural Living Family Podcast, Episode 44 – Healthy, Happy Holidays, Part 1

The contents of this presentation are for informational purposes only and are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This presentation does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.


[0:00 – 1:07] Prelude

Dr. Z: They would literally give each other $50 cash in a Christmas card and exchange it to each other.

Mama Z: Yeah, but guess what? It wasn’t even a regular Christmas card Christmas card. It was a-

Dr. Z: The bank.

Mama Z: Yeah. It was either a bank thing-

Dr. Z: You know the bank envelope?

Mama Z: … or it was like the money card. It didn’t even-

Dr. Z: It was a bank envelope with the little mistletoe on it.

Mama Z: Yeah. It wasn’t-

Dr. Z: Okay, Grandma would give me that. I’m like, “Sweet.” I always knew Grandma Virginia was good for 50 bucks.

Mama Z: And then you would say … Right.

Dr. Z: I could bank on, I could budget my January knowing that Grandma would give me 50 bucks.

Mama Z: You would look at me and you’d go, “We’re each going to get $50. We’re going out to dinner.”

Dr. Z: Yeah, but here’s the thing. My grandma and my mom would give each other the same amount. What’s the point?

Mama Z: I had some friends-

Dr. Z: Why don’t you just give her our card and say … I mean, you just break even. I don’t understand.

Mama Z: I actually had a friend that would say to me, “Hey, let’s give each other what we gave each other last year.” We didn’t give each other anything last year. That is perfect. Let’s go with that.


[1:08 – 1:38] Intro

Dr. Z: Hi, this is Dr. Z.

Mama Z: And this is Mama Z. Welcome to episode 44 of the Natural Living Family Podcast.

Dr. Z: Each week, we invite you into our home to talk about how we can master the art and science of natural living. You’re going to love today’s talk because we share the very same tips our family uses each and every day to enjoy an abundant life.

Mama Z: Come on in and get comfortable. After all, you’re one of the family, our Natural Living Family.


[1:39-2:39] Sponsor Spotlight: Matcha Green Tea

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Mama Z: Simply go to to find the special link so you can redeem this deal on the show notes from today’s episode.


[2:40 –8:19] Topic Intro

Dr. Z: Well, hey there, everyone. Welcome to the show. Hey, you know what? I thought we were going to have Chris show a picture of the Christmas tree.

Mama Z: No, no, no, after this episode … Actually, after the next episode, it’s going to go here behind me.

Dr. Z: What? Oh, okay.

Mama Z: Yes.

Dr. Z: Well, here’s the thing. We’re recording this … What’s today? We’re recording this on October 29th. How long have we had the Christmas tree up?

Mama Z: A week.

Dr. Z: October 29.

Mama Z: This one down here was Wednesday, but it was last Monday that we had our two big Christmas trees up.

Dr. Z: I don’t even know why you take it down.

Mama Z: Because it’s got to come down. It comes down in January. So itt used to be when we first were married, we’d put it up, and then we’d leave it up until sometime between Valentine’s Day and Easter.

Dr. Z: I love it.

Mama Z: And then I decided, let’s enjoy it earlier on. My lovely handyman, he’s like, “Nope, it comes down the third Monday in January.”

Dr. Z: All right.

Mama Z: So we already have it booked on the calendar.

Dr. Z: Well, we got this cute little corner tree that our friend, Jim and Patty, gave us a couple few years ago. I actually want this down here all the year around. The kids would love it.

Mama Z: I know, but it’s so-

Dr. Z: We’re in our basement studio.

Mama Z: What this tree is down here is all of the ornaments that our kids have made. This is their tree. It’s only going to be up for the holiday season, but I love it.

Dr. Z: I love it. Anyway, this airs November 18th. If you’re watching on YouTube or Facebook, wherever this is being showed for the video, you’re going to see Christmas trees coming up in a couple weeks. Hey, we’re excited about this one. For the next two episodes, episodes 44 and 45, we are going to share with you a very special presentation of our healthy, happy holidays.

We’ve been doing this for, I mean, at least six years now, I think, if not seven. We’ve been teaching this class through a variety of ways. We’ve been teaching this class through webinars. We’ve taught this class to our private inner circle group, all kinds of different things that we’ve done. We’ve done Facebook Lives. I was really excited that …

Mama Z: Remember where it started, too, right?

Dr. Z: No.

Mama Z: Yeah. You were in school. I was pregnant, one of the times.

Dr. Z: You’ve pretty much been pregnant since I’ve known you, it seems. Are you pregnant now?

Mama Z: No.

Dr. Z: You did take a pregnancy test.

Mama Z: I did, and I’m not.

Dr. Z: Are you sure?

Mama Z: Yes, I’m sure.

Dr. Z: I don’t know. I don’t know. Anyway, we might find out we got Baby Z number five coming.

Mama Z: No, I’m not pregnant.

Dr. Z: Are you sure?

Mama Z: Yes.

Dr. Z: Alright, we’ll see.

Mama Z: The test said no.

Dr. Z: You thought you were pregnant.

Mama Z: I did.

Dr. Z: Okay.

Mama Z: I’m not. I’m not, okay?

Dr. Z: Did you want to be pregnant?

Mama Z: We’ll see, whatever God gives us.

Dr. Z: See, that’s what I mean, because let the people know. Let your heart’s desire be known. I’m okay with another baby.

Mama Z: I’m okay with another baby, too.

Dr. Z: I want whatever God has for us.

Mama Z: I mean, our kids are like, “Hey, Mom, it’s about time.”

Dr. Z: Seriously, they’re putting pressure on us.

Mama Z: And then as soon as he gives me a kiss in the kitchen, they’re like, “Moochie kissing. We’re going to have another brother or sister.” It’s so funny.

Dr. Z: It is cute. They think that you have babies after moochie kissing.

Mama Z: And then baby Bella goes, “Aww,” like that. It’s so-

Dr. Z: Oh, Bella. She won’t be Baby Bella anymore. She’ll be Big Girl Bella.

Mama Z: Actually, everybody at school knows her as Baby Bella.

Dr. Z: She’ll always be Baby Bella.

Mama Z: Seriously, the kids in K4, they’re like, “Baby Bella.” Oh, I said, “Do you know my daughter Bella?” “No.” “Baby Bella?” “Yeah, I know Baby Bella.” It’s so cute.

Dr. Z: Aww, that’s so cute.

Mama Z: But no, we’re not.

Dr. Z: We started this while I was in school.

Mama Z: We started it because there was a lot of pressure from school, and this, and that. We started to look at the stuff that we do and that we have come up with throughout the years to … Really, it was a release. It was an outlet, really kind of to let our families know what we do as well because a lot of people have a lot of pressure during the holidays. Sometimes they take it out on their other family members, and stuff like that. We wanted to really share examples of how to enjoy the holidays, enjoy family, enjoy and make new traditions, and stuff like that because everybody has to navigate through those things.

Dr. Z: This was actually the very first essential oil class that I taught online. Hey, you are in good company if, number one, you find yourself taking two steps back for every step you move forward to stay healthy and fit during the holidays. You’re in good company if you are still trying to lose the weight that you gained during the holidays last year. Uh-oh. You’re in good company if each year you dread Thanksgiving dinner because all of the irresistible, tempting goodies just tempt you too much, I guess. You’re in good company if holiday stress overwhelms you.

You are in good company if you want to thrive and not just survive this year during the holidays. And you’re in good company if you love essential oils and want to use them more this holiday season, but not sure how. You can trust us. We can relate. We’re a family of six. We understand what it’s like to struggle through the holidays. We’re going to cover some of our fun little tips, but before we do …


[8:20 –12:55] Diffuser Reveal and Your Reviews

Mama Z: Yes. Okay, so I’ve come up with a whole variety of different holiday, from Thanksgiving, all the way through Christmas, blends for the fall and winter. Some of those are going to be coming out the next few weeks that we have our podcast. This one was everybody’s favorite in the diffuser this weekend. I call it Christmas Cookies.

It has three drops of lemon, two drops of bergamot, two drops of cinnamon bark, and one drop of vanilla oleoresin. It is amazing. You can leave out the vanilla. It still smells amazing. That was something that we added after the fact. You can do it just like I said, or leave out the vanilla if you don’t have it. But it smells wonderful. It actually, that whole blend, even smells wonderful in body products.

Dr. Z: Oh, yeah. Yeah, it’s really nice.

Mama Z: I started making them into body products for the holiday season.

Dr. Z: And my favorite part. This is almost my favorite part of the show because I really, really, really appreciate people just taking time out. Some of the reviews that you all will leave us are pretty lengthy. One review was like-

Mama Z: I love them.

Dr. Z: … a book. It was like, “Wow. Love it.” This is from Gymnastics Mad from the US of A. Her five star … By the way, thank you so much. It’s interesting. We’ve only have gotten five star reviews of people actually writing, which is cool.

Mama Z: That’s cool.

Dr. Z: I know, only, like we’re batting a thousand. “Definitely not too long of a podcast,” she says.

Mama Z: Awesome.

Dr. Z: Okay. There’s a little history behind this. If you’ve been listening to us since the beginning, you know that I had somewhat of an insecurity issue about this whole podcast thing. We hired a podcast production company, and they’re like, “Don’t go over 60 minutes. The data suggests that people fall off after 60 minutes. You don’t want them too long,” and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.

I’m like, “Okay.” SoI got this timer. I actually got the timer right now looking at it, and-

Mama Z: You got the timer?

Dr. Z: I’m looking at the timer.

Mama Z: No.

Dr. Z: Well, I got the timer looking at us.

Mama Z: I got the timer.

Dr. Z: Yeah, but I’m just saying I got it looking at us, and we’re all set up.

Mama Z: He’s so funny.

Dr. Z: It’s good to hear from people like, her name is Chey, by the way, it says here. All right, let’s read this review.

Mama Z: Yes.

Dr. Z: “Hello, Dr. and Mama Z. I just started listening to your podcasts and absolutely love them.” Aw, thank you. “I love your little snickers,” ha, ha, “at each other, on down to the detailed stories. Please don’t change a thing. I would also like to thank you for inviting us to be with the Lord with you, as I have strayed away from Him. I’ve really been feeling the urge to find a church home again and I know it’s what’s missing in my life: church.

“Thank you for reminding me that I can have Him back in my life. Look forward to continue to listen and learn from you both. Many blessings to you and your wonderful family. May you continue to have the strength and happiness to continue down this journey.Chey.”

Mama Z: Very sweet.

Dr. Z: I love that because she’s like, “It’s definitely not too long.” Okay, cool. But we still try to keep it to an hour. But you know what? I really am grateful for this because this just validates what God put on our heart. We’ve talked in the previous, in some of our previous episodes about your mission, about your purpose. I forget what it was, episode 31, or 28, or whatever. But go back, listen to those episodes, y’all, because you have no idea how far-reaching something you may do or say will be in the future.

When we share our little stories, when we do what we do, I had no idea that Chey would be listening, and that God would just prick her heart, so to speak, and just tug on her heart, and woo her back and say, “You know you got to go back to church, sweetheart.”

I mean, Chey, we love you. We speak blessing and peace over you. If you feel like you’ve strayed away from Him, then He’s just welcoming you back with open arms, right?

Mama Z: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Dr. Z: We love all of everyone listening right now, whether you’re Christian, whether you’re of another faith, we speak God’s abundant blessings and favor over you. We do pray, though. We do pray that you come to know Christ as savior, as we have found Him to be the way, and the truth, and the life. Amen.

Mama Z: Amen.


[12:56 –23:03] 5 Healthy Tips To Survive The Pressure Of The Holidays

Dr. Z: And we’re so grateful because it really has been through God that we’ve been able to do the things that we’ve been able to do. Believe it or not, this is not petty, this is not trivial. What we’re about to share here is something really, really serious. Let me share with you a couple things. Let me go … Hold on, I got to pull up my notes because I have a presentation. Actually, pretty much the same presentation I’ve been sharing for six years because-

Mama Z: Except for we’ve adapted it over the years and we’ve added, just with our different stories, and the different things that’s happened to us over the past number of years. It definitely-

Dr. Z: But the core is the core.

Mama Z: Yeah, it definitely … Yeah.

Dr. Z: This is the core. This is the Thanksgiving version. Depending on what we got going on in the next month, we might want to do the Christmas version, too. The Christmas version of this presentation is all about DIY and how to give the gift of health. But this is a Thanksgiving-based presentation.

What we’re going to cover today are the top five healthy holiday tips that we have. I’m going to list them out quick. We might not actually cover all five. We’ll probably have to cover one or two in the next episode. But number one, sit back and relax. Number two, boost your immunity. Number three, work out smarter, not just harder. Number four, BYOF, bring your own food.

Mama Z: Always.

Dr. Z: Number five, be truly thankful. All right. This is so not trivial because according to the American Psychological Association, more than 30% of women and 20% of men “comfort eat” to manage stress in their lives. What I have found is that during the holidays, this escalates, like, exponentially. Why do you think the new year, “new you” type of mentality has made hundreds of millions, if not billions, of dollars on weight loss tactics? All the gyms around the country are filled the first few weeks of the year.

Mama Z: Oh, my goodness, the first couple weeks when I go back … I mean, and God bless you if you’re starting out on your health voyage. But I will tell you, the first couple weeks, it’s kind of dicey finding a spot. And then you-

Dr. Z: Everyone’s fighting for that first spot because no one wants to walk. Isn’t that funny?

Mama Z: I know. It’s so funny.

Dr. Z: At the gym.

Mama Z: At the gym.

Dr. Z: Pick the last spot, you’re supposed to exercise.

Mama Z: Yeah. When I was in college, just to train for pageants-

Dr. Z: I love it.

Mama Z: … I actually would park in the far lot, and I would walk in three-inch stilettos just to make sure it was one with my feet.

Dr. Z: I don’t know about that.

Mama Z: If you want an extra calf workout, go for that.

Dr. Z: I don’t know about that. Folks, the data has shown that the holidays are some of the most depressing times for people. They’re the times when suicide, and abuse, and trauma seem to skyrocket. It’s hard for a lot of people to go through the holidays, a lot of which because of the pressure that we put on ourselves during the holidays to perform, like the movie that we just watched about the girl. What’s that cute movie, just about the girl who hired this guy to be her fake fiancé?

Mama Z: Oh, my gosh. Oh, my gosh. That is such a funny … It’s Holiday Engagement.

Dr. Z: It’s a cute one. Watch Holiday Engagement. Sabrina, right, again, Mama Z, we’ve had the Christmas tree up for a couple weeks.

Mama Z: Yeah, I think you walked up yesterday. You were kind of making fun of me because it was-

Dr. Z: The Christmas music. It’s not even Halloween. It’s funny. You’re reinventing the wheel.

Mama Z: Okay, you had Christmas music playing in June or July. Do you remember this?

Dr. Z: It’s called Christmas in July, not Christmas in September, October.

Mama Z: It starts then. Well, you started it.

Dr. Z: It’s like half-time break.

Mama Z: You started it, okay.

Dr. Z: Okay. That’s what I mean. Let’s just have it all year round.

Mama Z: If you have a Pandora account, then you have your favorite holiday music station. Anyhow, we were rocking to the holidays. We were doing classic-

Dr. Z: I love it.

Mama Z: … children’s favorite holidays, but they were like the songs that my grandma and grandpa listened to on their vinyl. I mean, it was amazing. Esther, Isaiah, and Elijah were like, “I really like this one,” and then they’re like, “I really like this guy’s voice.” These are like Doris Day, and Judy Garland, and all these-

Dr. Z: Nat King Cole, Johnny Mathis, classics.

Mama Z: They’re like, “I like how their voices sound.” They said, “You know, a lot of people’s voices don’t sound like that anymore.” It’s just neat how even the kids recognized that.

Dr. Z: But Christmas Engagement. The story goes … You just got to watch it. It’s cute. But this mom, the protagonist, whatever her name is in the movie, she just wants her daughter to get married. There’s a lot of pressure. This woman is mortified every year to go back home for the holidays and not have a boyfriend, or a fiancé, or a husband, or whatever, right? It’s just that pressure.

How many of you feel that pressure? Aunt so-and-so or Uncle so-and-so is going to ask you, “Hey, you going to get married?” or, “Hey, you going to have kids?” or if you’re single. What about that Cousin Mike that always just gets under your nerves, or someone, right? Someone that you just dread seeing because it’s holidays.

You got Thanksgiving, Christmas. You got weddings and funerals. That’s when you see these people. These aren’t people that you normally spend time with sometimes, right? These sometimes are not the people that you want to call on the phone every day. You’re almost forced to. And then you got holiday engagements at work, and everyone’s got to put on their fake happy, shiny people hat on, like, “Yeah, I love working with you. Let’s go have fun and go bowling.” It’s a lot of stress for people, right?

Mama Z: Right. Well, and at Santa School this year, they had a millennial moms’ marketer that came and talked to us about the hottest toys for the season, which was actually a very awesome talk. In fact, I go, “Are you just saying I need to put all this in my Amazon cart and call it good?” She’s like, “Yup.”

Dr. Z: Yup.

Mama Z: We had about half of it in there. I wasn’t going with any loud toys anyhow, no loud toys. But one of the things she said is, she said, “If you receive someone’s Christmas card between October 31st and November, right around Thanksgiving time, what are you thinking?”

She’s like, “Moms think,‘that lady’s really got it together. She already has her Christmas card out.’” They said that millennial moms especially are planning their Christmas card out from June.

Dr. Z: I did not know that.

Mama Z: Well, we had ours planned out from June, which is so funny because it was-

Dr. Z: But you oftentimes miss the cut, though.

Mama Z: I always try to get it out on our wedding anniversary, which is December.

Dr. Z: Yeah.

Mama Z: Yep. We have been shorted a few times.

Dr. Z: Okay. I’m going to leave out names here. That’s caused some big issues with my family, is that you’ve neglected to send out Christmas cards at certain times. Some people in my family didn’t get the Christmas card on time, or they didn’t get a Christmas card. I get the call, “Why didn’t I get a Christmas card this year?” Are you kidding me, right?

Mama Z: Well, let’s-

Dr. Z: Am I the only one with the crazy family that gets people yelling at him because they didn’t get a stupid Christmas card?

Mama Z: Yeah, because my dad called me up and he goes, “I heard some stuff is going on with not our family. I just want to let you know that you don’t ever have to send me a Christmas card again, or any of our other family members, or any of our friends.”

Dr. Z: It sucked, seriously.

Mama Z: What happened was I ordered Christmas cards from a Christmas card company. It took quite a while to come, and they shorted me 25 cards. I had already sent out, because my mom got back to me right away, and was like, “Well, this is the changes with this, this, and these people.” I sent them out immediately.

Dr. Z: Why is it so stressful?

Mama Z: It’s like whatever.

Dr. Z: It’s like a job.

Mama Z: It is. At the end there-I’m on to… I’ve been managing-

Dr. Z: We get Christmas cards from people I don’t talk to, like years. The obligatory Christmas card. Save your stamp.

Mama Z: I love those.

Dr. Z: Save your stamp. You know what? I’d rather you call me on the phone and say, “Hey, how are you doing, Eric? I haven’t talked to you in 15 years,” instead of a Christmas card.

Mama Z: See, instead, here I am, I love it because I have not kept up with people, and then I run into all these different people, different places. I’m like, “Oh, my gosh, I can’t believe so-and-so had a baby, and this and that.”

Dr. Z: So stressful.

Mama Z: You don’t even look at the Christmas card, only I do. I do.

Dr. Z: Not only stressful about how the holidays look, the gifts that you buy, and you know what? Let me-

Mama Z: You aren’t going to-

Dr. Z: Hold on, listen, I got so much laundry to air out when it comes to holidays because my mom and dad … I’m sorry, not Mom and Dad, my mom and grandma. My grandma’s been deceased now for several years. They would literally give each other $50 cash in a Christmas card and exchange it to each other.

Mama Z: Yeah, but guess what? It wasn’t even a regular Christmas card Christmas card. It was-

Dr. Z: The bank.

Mama Z: Yeah. It was either a bank thing-

Dr. Z: You know the bank envelope?

Mama Z: … or it was like the money card. It didn’t even-

Dr. Z: It was a bank envelope with the little mistletoe on it.

Mama Z: Yeah. It wasn’t-

Dr. Z: Okay, Grandma would give me that. I’m like, “Sweet.” I always knew Grandma Virginia was good for 50 bucks.

Mama Z: And then you would say … Right.

Dr. Z: I could bank on, I could budget my January knowing that Grandma would give me 50 bucks.

Mama Z: You would look at me and you’d go, “We’re each going to get $50. We’re going out to dinner.”

Dr. Z: Yeah, but here’s the thing. My grandma and my mom would give each other the same amount. What’s the point?

Mama Z: You know what?I actually had some friends-

Dr. Z: Why don’t you just give her our card and say … I mean, you break even. I don’t understand.

Mama Z: I actually had a friend that would say to me, “Hey, let’s give each other what we gave each other last year.” We didn’t give each other anything last year. That is perfect. Let’s go with that.


[23:04 –33:16] Dealing with Holiday Stress

Dr. Z: All right, so another little … Again, what are talking about? Holiday stress, right?I mean, this is significant.I mean, we’re talking… I’m very sensitive to this.

Mama Z: It sounds like it.

Dr. Z: In 1993, my great-grandmother died. My great-grandmother, she was Sicilian. My mother’s side is completely Sicilian. My father’s side is completely Polish. If you know anything, staunch Roman Catholic, traditional. It’s very traditional. It’s very serious.

My late grandmother Chessie, from my Polish side, one of my favorite people in the world. She would just make this meal on Christmas Eve that we all dreaded, like pickled herring, vegetarian pierogies. Everything had to be vegetarian because you don’t eat meat on Fridays in the Catholic faith, traditional. You can’t eat meat on Christmas Eve. We all dreaded the dreaded…

Mama Z: So that’s you always liked our house anyway.

Dr. Z: Seriously. We all dreaded it as a kid.

Mama Z: Ours is decadent and fabulous.

Dr. Z: But we dreaded it. But again, tradition, tradition.My dad, and I bless them, if my dad and my uncles are listening, I love you all. Even today, they still will crack open the pickled herring, and force themselves in to say, yes, they like it.

Mama Z: Yeah, so even-

Dr. Z: Pickled herring, are you kidding me? Very traditional.

Mama Z: My family had pickled herring on my mom’s side. My Aunt Amy was the only one that actually liked pickled herring. I tried it once, and I was like, “That is disgusting and we’ll never have that at our house.”

Dr. Z: Very traditional.

Mama Z: Remember, you get to select the things that you want to take to create your own holiday traditions.

Dr. Z: But here’s the thing, though. Just think of the stress, though. You have the same meal. You don’t want to go to someone’s house because you know it’s going to be that way.

Mama Z: It’s so crazy. Why would you do the same awful meal? Why wouldn’t you do something-

Dr. Z: Because that’s what Grandma wanted, and you got to love … I mean, Grandma was the sweetest ever. I mean, so you’re like, “Okay, Grandma, I love you.” But then you … Hold on, I’m painting a picture.

Mama Z: All right, and then after you paint your picture, we’re going to paint a brighter picture in here.

Dr. Z: No, no, I’m setting the tone here. I know this is going long. Why? Because you got to sit back and relax. I mean, trust me. This is the number one holiday tip. We got to … because you don’t have the PTSD that I do when it comes to holidays.

Mama Z: But you know-

Dr. Z: But we had this… Holidays sucked for me. They were horrible. I don’t look back, and I don’t be like, “Oh, wow, I look forward-“

Mama Z: Oh, my gosh. See, holidays were the most … It was everything. We geared everything up around the holidays. My dad is very thrifty. I think I’ve mentioned before, he was featured in The Millionaire Next Door. The only reason why he submitted his stories was so he could get a free book. He keeps the house at 62 degrees.

Dr. Z: 62.

Mama Z: And 58 at night.

Dr. Z: Cold.

Mama Z: Now it’s 64 and 62 at night. He’s bumped it up a little bit. Well, the one time when my grandpa came down in a snowmobile outfit, and just sat at the kitchen table, and just sat there, he said, “Are you trying to give me a hint?” He turned it up a couple degrees, okay?

Dr. Z: That’s so cold.

Mama Z: But my dad, he gets excited if somebody’s tree falls down because he goes and gets the wood-

Dr. Z: Oh, for your firewood.

Mama Z: For the firewood, okay? He has figured out how many fires that they’re going to have all throughout the winter. I was there in October, and for me, it was freezing. It got down to 39 degrees, which I know it sounds wimpy now, but it was cold. It was wet cold, which is even colder than cold. It was Michigan cold. I was like, “Dad, seriously, we need a fire.”

We had two fires when I was there. But he’s like, “You know that’s two fires now? That’s two fires less in the rest of the season.” But at the holidays, every single day he would do a fire at night.

Dr. Z: He’d splurge.

Mama Z: Absolutely. We would all watch movies and sit in the family room, in front of the fireplace, all together.

Dr. Z: Well, you enjoyed the people that would come to your home. You had friends and family.

Mama Z: Oh, yes. Yeah, and because my mom always said family is what you make it. It’s the people that you decide to be around. You know my sister’s godfather Ron. Actually, that’s where the tradition started was they were on the phone wishing them well during Christmas week. My sister got on the phone and said, “Hey, do you want to come over for Christmas Eve dinner?”

But my mom didn’t know it until the day before when they called and said, “Hey, would you like us to bring something?” They were like, “We didn’t even know that …Samantha invited us. She said that you wanted us to come.” Anyway, that’s when it started.

My grandparents would come every other year, because they’d go out to California the opposite years where my aunt and uncle lived and we looked so forward to it. We looked forward to the meal. We looked forward to the company. We have these traditions throughout November and December, how we decorate the tree, just all of that kind of stuff. We would really look forward to it, whether it was Thanksgiving.

And then as we got older, and boyfriends, significant others, with my sisters and I, my mom said it was crazy. We would have Thanksgiving on Thursday, and then we would do it all on Friday with friends, so then we just decided it would just be easier if we did Thanksgiving on Friday instead of Thursday. Now we do it on Saturday. We just-

Dr. Z: That’s confusing, but it works.

Mama Z: I know, it works.

Dr. Z: It works.

Mama Z: It works with everybody’s family because everybody was either celebrating on Thursday or Friday.

Dr. Z: But you’re rare. I mean, statistically, I think you need to recognize that not many people can relate. No, let me say that. I would guess the majority of people, the majority of people, don’t have that type of experience to fall back on. I would think a majority of people, just because of the sheer number of people that we know commit suicide, that there’s this … crime skyrockets, depression, all the things during the holidays. I think it’s…

That’s one of the things I love about your family. I really married up because I married you, I married into this wonderful just environment that I wasn’t raised in. It really opened up my eyes that you don’t have to dread, because my mom and dad, I’ll give them props. They did a great job, traditions at our home, go get the tree, decorate this, the cookies, the cartoons. But when it comes to family get-togethers, my mom didn’t want to go to my dad’s side, my dad didn’t want to go to my mom’s side. There was always issues. There was always arguing.

I kid you not, I was referring back to it, but I think it’s important for me to say this, and then we’ll transition to the solution, because for those of you who could relate to really not looking forward to some of the get-togethers, I’ll never forget the Christmas of 1993. I’m not kidding.

Mama Z: Okay, we have a date, folks.

Dr. Z: No, this is legit. When my grandma, my great-grandma Stella, we called her Nonna, from Sicily. She could barely speak English. She died at 93. It was like World War III at my aunt’s house.

Mama Z: In the kitchen, or what?

Dr. Z: It was a small home. Kitchen, living area, that’s how we all congregated. Grandma died, Great-Grandma died, and Great-Grandma was the matriarch. She was the ruling class of the home. I got to say, a lot of the things that you see in these movies about the mafia, about Italy, and stuff, a lot of it’s true. I mean, women had a control, and a strong woman would have a control.

She very much created a big issue between my aunt and my grandma, who are sisters. She favored my grandma. My aunt, she treated like a servant. Imagine 70 years of pent up anger, 70 years of pent up hurt exploding on Christmas Day. That’s what I’ll never forget. I’ll never forget when Grandma died and Aunt Vita’s passing out money because Grandma just left an inheritance. All I remember, I got 500 bucks out of that deal.

Here I am, I got 500 bucks, and then Grandma started mentioning something about money, my mom mentioned something. Like, “Well, who got this? Who got that?” Something happened, my Aunt Vita just flipped. It was like all of the pain, and hurt, and sorrow, and abuse that she experienced was lashed out into my grandma, and this was Christmas Day. It was one of the most traumatic experiences I dealt with as a child. I’ll never forget.

You think we were looking forward to going there next year? Do you think we really wanted to go back to that environment? You think Christmas now had a good, positive thing for me? Maybe you can’t relate to that, but I’m talking like screaming, crying, yelling. It was just like, what do you do? Here we are, just there.

My dad’s like, “Let’s get out of here.” My mom was like, “No, we have to stay.” It was just insanity. That was the only time something that bad happened, but it wasn’t like we really couldn’t wait. Again, as a kid, I wanted gifts, but here’s the thing, y’all. I want to transition to this. It is really important, and here’s my first and best … If you take anything from this discussion, the only thing you should walk away with is important. If you could relate to any of this, if holidays give you stress on any level.

I mean, how many people freak out about wearing the right ugly sweater at the holiday sweater whatever? It’s all performance-based. Buying the right gift, doing this the right way, making the right dish, making sure everything’s perfect. The spirit that just is, quite frankly, antichrist. It is important to be proactive against this, against your mental duress, against stress and anxiety, before it becomes an issue. This includes taking measures to combat anxiety, depression, loneliness, and stress. Why are we talking about this in the middle of November? Because a lot of you listening right now in the next two, three weeks, and through the end of the year, this is going to affect you.

We want to give you a few things. We have seven, I’m going to list seven, seven ways, proven ways, that you can combat and manage holiday stress. But before we cover that, a word from our sponsor.


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[33:43 –38:36] Combat Holiday Stress By Being Proactive

Mama Z: One other thing I was going to mention, too, is that when you get together with your family or your extended family – because we’ve had a few Thanksgivings where we went to Minnesota and any time we went to Minnesota, we’d get together with all of our cousins and everybody, everybody got along and loved being with each other there, too – is that where you see the most stress, see where you can be a solution in that as well.

Like you said, being proactive is really key. We’re already making and wrapping Christmas presents now while we have them because you don’t … I’ve been there where December 24th at ten o’clock at night, we’re wrapping presents. Everybody’s had a situation where stuff has happened and that’s where it’s gotten to, so do it now. Anything that you see that’s holiday related, start putting a box together of even some of the food, or some of the decorations, or some of the things that as you’re seeing things, start writing your lists for these type of holidays. Pick the thing that gives you the most stress about it, and then start making a list now, and start working towards that.

Dr. Z: Because how stressful is it? Like we mentioned a couple episodes ago, but like my sister-in-law’s mother who came up to you and said, “Wow, thank you so much for bringing this dessert. I just got on keto, and I knew I couldn’t eat anything, any of the desserts here,” or what?

Mama Z: No, she had allergies.

Dr. Z: Wasn’t it keto, though? She did keto.

Mama Z: She did keto, but she had allergies. She knew she couldn’t do any dairy. She couldn’t do any gluten.

Dr. Z: But still, she knew she was going to walk into Thanksgiving-

Mama Z: She was dreading it.

Dr. Z: Yeah, that’s what I mean. It’s like, this is the little stuff.

Mama Z: She was dreading it. She was like, “Oh, my gosh, I ended up being able to eat stuff.” And then you were like, “Let’s …” I make Christmas cookies, and they last a year because we freeze them. That’s a trick my mom always did, because of my-

Dr. Z: Your kids’ treats.

Mama Z: Well, and because of my mom’s Christmas open house that happened in November, we would make Christmas cookies in October. We would freeze them, and then we’d make enough for Christmas in that time so that would take the holiday baking stress out of it, so that it was in the fall, so you’re excited about Christmas, you’re excited about that kind of stuff. It would take it out of the equation, so that’s one less thing on the list, right? And then we’d bring the cookies out for after church on Christmas Eve, and have peppermint stick ice cream that we would make.

Dr. Z: You could put some of those in the oven for like two, three minutes, right?

Mama Z: My grandma would take Wheat Thins, saltines, and any cracker that was far beyond its life. She’s like, “Oh, all you have to do is pop it in at 325 for 10 minutes, and it is just like it came out of the oven fresh.” I’m not kidding. Even your cookies, you can do that kind of stuff with.

Dr. Z: Yeah, they work.

Mama Z: We do that. Here we had … I was like, “Oh, Eric, I don’t want to bring Christmas cookies for Thanksgiving.” He’s like, “No, no, no. We’re going to bring them some little kids’ treats.”

We happened to have pizzelles, which are Belgian waffle cookies as well, out in the car. She was like, “You know what I’m going to miss the most?” This is after dinner. She’s like, “I’m going to miss having the pizzelles.” And I was like, “Oh, my gosh. We have those in the car.”

Dr. Z: Yeah, my sister-in-law’s mother.

Mama Z: Right, so you fire up the oven, and-

Dr. Z: She was in heaven.

Mama Z: She was like, “Oh, my goodness.”

Dr. Z: But you see how that was turned around?

Mama Z: Yeah.

Dr. Z: If you’re on a diet, whatever restrictions you have.

Mama Z: In our lifestyle, it does not matter where we go. We’ll talk more about that later, but-

Dr. Z: Yeah, it’s BYOF.

Mama Z: Right. We’ll talk more about that later, but this is-

Dr. Z: But this is a holiday stressor.

Mama Z: But it is a holiday stressor.

Dr. Z: The five Ps.

Mama Z: The five Ps: proper planning prevents poor performance. The reason why we do that is because we’ve done it bad. When you do it well, then you want to continue to do it well.

Dr. Z: We have to gone to holiday events early on, and we didn’t have what we needed, and we weren’t prepared, and they were not as enjoyable. The kids were like, “Eh.”

Mama Z: There was one holiday, and I said, “You know what? I’m not doing that anymore because every time people say they make it a certain way that I can have, I always get sick.” One time, I was-

Dr. Z: Come on, BYOF. That’s the next episode.

Mama Z: But, I mean, I have literally had to bring my own turkey roaster and cook-

Dr. Z: Hey, save it for-

Mama Z: … in the basement, by myself, okay?

Dr. Z: Save it for number four.

Mama Z: I am.

Dr. Z: We’re on still number one. It’s 35 minutes, we’re still … number 36-

Mama Z: Come on.

Dr. Z: Chris is laughing at us. She’s like, “This is going to be a short episode.” No, it’s not going to be a short episode. I know it’s not going to be a short episode. Nothing’s short with you when it comes to this. I love it.


[38:37 –48:31] Tips For Making a Stressful Holiday Enjoyable

Dr. Z: No, stress, stress, stress. Are you stressed out about what you’re going to eat, what you’re going to wear, everything? Trust me, this can be miserable, or it could be great. Here’s one thing I want to remind us. What’s Thanksgiving?

Mama Z: You’re supposed to be thankful for your family-

Dr. Z: What’s Christmas? What’s Hanukkah? What’s New Year?

Mama Z: … and be thankful for everything you have.

Dr. Z: Listen.Let’s first flip this on its head and remember, Jesus really is the reason for the entire season, of all of the holidays that we have. We’ll cover this more next episode, but it’s really about putting things into perspective, right?

Mama Z: Right.

Dr. Z: Right now, determine in your heart to make this as an enjoyable holiday as possible. First though, I would suggest for people, maybe like me, if you’ve had traumatic experiences during the holidays, seek out support. I’m being real here. Nothing to be ashamed of, whether it’s from a trusted friend, a trained professional, a pastor, whoever. Sometimes the best stress reliever is just talking to someone, right?

Here’s something, it might seem off the wall, but it’s not, chiropractic care, clinically shown to reduce physical, emotional, and mental stress. For those of you who like going to your chiropractor, but guess what? Again, according to the statistics, chiropractic visits typically fall off around this time of the year, and then they get back up, because people are busy.

It’s like, “Oh, I can’t get out of my busy schedule to go.” Now is not the time to skimp. Now is not the time to skimp as well on your exercise. More on that later, because that’s its own thing. Make sure you keep up your stress relieving habits, which include prayer, meditation, even tai chi and yoga. I mean, releasing negative mental energy and allowing the positive influence gained from these activities can really help you define your holidays where you’re being very proactive.

Here’s one thing, and I want to be sensitive about this. But it’s all about fellowship and positive communication. You can avoid and should avoid negative and potentially emotionally draining interactions. There was one person in my family that for some reason was always antagonistic to my father. My father would … Every year this was an issue. Every family get-together, every holiday, every birthday, every whatever. This person, quite frankly, just acted like an idiot and would tease my dad, we’re talking adults, make fun of my dad, make negative comments, shame him, ignore him.

And you know, oftentimes, you find yourself in a situation where that creates a strain. That creates a strain, like, “Well, I don’t want to go,” or, “I don’t want to do this,” or, “Let’s leave early.” My mom was like, “No, it’s my family. We got to stay.” It was miserable, just to understand the dynamic.

Here’s the thing, A, you don’t need to go. B, especially if there’s someone that really gets your goat, you don’t need to sit next to that person. There’s an element where, yes, we turn the other cheek. I want us to be Christ-like. I want us to be loving, but you know what? Even Christ showed us that He didn’t surround Himself with people that really didn’t support Him and love Him. He did His thing. He shared His ministry, but it’s not like He went to the Sadducees and Pharisees and spent all day with them at their homes.

Mama Z: Right.

Dr. Z: Right? There’s an element where Christ even knew. He put them in their place, and He had to separate Himself because anyone that took Him away from what God had for Him … It’s like he said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan.”

So if someone really is under the influence of the enemy, and I would daresay, these people are being influenced by the devil. If they are just being mean, or rude, or whatever it is, and this is real. I’ve seen this in all kinds of different environments. You need to pray about whether or not you even should go. Maybe that’s the statement, because I remember when we made a statement, and we did not go to a family function. Like, “Look, we’re serious.” I mean, we’re willing to say no. I’m willing to, quote, “offend or hurt somebody” because this is not healthy.

Mama Z: Right. This isn’t the environment. Not only that, but you have to hold a standard, too. You’re part of whatever holiday you make it.

Dr. Z: Don’t be a doormat.

Mama Z: Yeah. That’s one thing where being the matriarch of my family, really, and being a strong personality-

Dr. Z: You?

Mama Z: Yeah. I’m not willing to budge because I’m not willing to have my children’s holidays messed up and have PTSD over holidays because of what happened in their childhood. I’m not going to do that. I’m going to protect my family at all costs.

Dr. Z: Yeah. And I got to say, in my mom’s defense, my mom was raised … I mean, it was tough. My grandma was extremely abusive. I mean, I never heard my grandma say I love you to me or my mother. My grandma was probably the coldest person I’ve ever known in my life, and this was my mom’s mom. My mom did not have a good example. My grandma was verbally and physically abusive.

Still, though, my mom, to the very end of my grandma’s last breath, was there for her. I would have wrote off Grandma years ago. I mean, in my mind, if my mother is going to treat me to that level, I’m not going to see you on Christmas. I’m not going to go out of my way for Thanksgiving. At one point, my mom, just because it’s all she knew, she’s like … She had no brothers and sisters. She had no cousins or loved ones that really treated her with kindness and respect. It was the worst possible situation you could put yourself into over, and over, and over. She was like, “That’s is all I know. This is my family.”

Now that she’s older, she’s been able to finally be strong enough to separate herself from it, but I think back, what if she were younger, strong enough, willing to leave, what would that have done? I would say it would’ve helped a lot with her relationship with my father, with us. But I remember when we said no, it was almost devastating to her. No, we’re not going to put ourselves in that situation. These people are crazy.

I got to say, you know, you get it. For those listening, if you’ve got crazy family members, you get it. If you’ve got a crazy coworker, you get it. If you’ve got crazy neighbors, you get it. Don’t put yourself in that situation.

Mama Z: And for me, I mean, when we spent time with my one grandma, I mean, just so loving and would brush my hair for hours. My other grandma gave back massages for hours. I mean, just such a loving environment, play games all the time. My grandpa would play pool with us. We’d play card games. I mean, my grandma Mackenzie would play card games all day long literally with you. To go from that to a situation like this is totally different.

Dr. Z: Yeah, you got the short end of the stick on my family.

Mama Z: Well, and I don’t even say that. It’s just different.

Dr. Z: No, really, you did.

Mama Z: And because-

Dr. Z: It’s been hard for us. It’s created stress between us, too.

Mama Z: But I realized early on, no. I’m in control of this situation because it is going to be what we make it. I remember having to navigate those things. But holding my ground was one of the best things that I could’ve done because not only did we set a standard for food, but we also set a standard for what we would allow and not allow. Even if meant a little hardship in the interim, overall, those relationships are a lot better because of it.

Dr. Z: I mean, I wasn’t willing to do that at first. Just as a confession to y’all, I wasn’t strong enough to say “no” at first because I wasn’t raised to be strong enough. My mom didn’t have that.

Mama Z: Well, and it’s funnybecause my sisters…

Dr. Z: She didn’t-

Mama Z: …and my familyjust like adding family members to our family, and sisters getting married, and that kind of thing. My mom said, “Do you think they’re ready for the Frawley girls?” I go, “Nobody’s ready for the Frawley girls.” That was my last name, Frawley. And then all of my sisters pipe in, “Yeah, that’s about right.”

Dr. Z: Mm-hmm (affirmative). So I appreciate it, though, and I’ll actually go on record, because this is transcribed. This will be in the air waves forever, for all eternity. I really do, because this caused a lot of problems with us at first. It did. We had our own arguments and our issues. I was like, “No, we have to. It’s my family.”

I will remember being at a point where like, “Enough’s enough. We’re not going to this.” We said no. We didn’t go to a family function and I got hell for it. Oh, boy. I got hell from it from all angles. I’m like, “You know what? No. I’m not going to let this affect my family anymore. I repent it to you, unto the Lord.” I learned a valuable lesson.

Why am I saying this? Because I can come from a different perspective. Just like that Christmas Engagement movie, if this girl would’ve told her mom, like, “Mom, I love you,” and talked to her, and reasoned with her, and be like, “Look, you can’t put pressure on me to get married,” or whatever. Little things that we see, but why do you think people make movies like this? Because it’s based off of real life.

Mama Z: Right. Well, and I think one of the things was that her mom had said was, “Remember, 30s is in the rear view. You can’t be a spinster forever,” or something like that. She’s leaving this on her daughter’s voicemail, you know what I mean?

Dr. Z: I know, it’s funny.

Mama Z: It’s this-

Dr. Z: But it came from a heart of concern.

Mama Z: Right. I find it’s better to address those things and not sweep it under the rug, because if you sweep too much under the rug, eventually you’re going to trip on the big pile.


[48:32 – 54:36] Healthy Tip #1: 7 Ways to Relieve Your Stress

Dr. Z: Why are we talking about this for so long? Because this is such a big issue, how to be healthy and happy during the holidays.If you do not set the tone, if you do not prepare your mind, your heart, your soul. I’m not kidding, if you need to, do what I do fast and pray. Get on your hands and knees, and ask God to help you, and also how to be a good witness because sometimes people need you to stand up and be firm. You’re like, “Look, I love you, but I love you enough where I’m not going to put my family and myself in this situation.”

Don’t think the “whole turn the other cheek, go the extra mile” verse has been misinterpreted beyond ad nauseam in the Body of Christ. You don’t need to put yourself in the situation where you’re a doormat. And we think this sets the whole tone for the entire holiday season.

All right. I listed six of them. Number one, seek out support. Number two, chiropractic care. Don’t forget your exercise, number three. Number four, keep the fellowship and positive communication. Number five, prayer meditation. Number six, do something even exceptionally stress relieving. I found tai chi and yoga to be very much evidenced-based. For those of you who are Christians, don’t be sending me hate mail that we’re talking New Age stuff. I’m not talking worshiping spirits or Buddhas, I’m talking literally stretching. I’m talking doing things that are very meditative in nature that help you. This is very much something that you could do and not-

Mama Z: Right, especially being a martial artist, and us being in the Bible Belt, it’s a different thing here. We’re not talking become a yogi and do whatever. But definitely, if exercise can be a relief for you, stretching is one to go. Group fitness is another way to go. Just staying active, finding the things that are good for stress relief like physical activity, just to take you away from what you’re currently doing and just give you a new, fresh outlook, and your body.

Dr. Z: Number seven, use essential oils.

Mama Z: Of course.

Dr. Z: Here are ten essential oils that are proven to help with stress relief, not in any particular order, but I’ll list them in this order. Number one, orange. Number two, lemon. Three, bergamot.Four, neroli.Five, rose. Six, ylangylang.Seven, geranium.Eight, lavender.Nine, chamomile.Ten, spikenard.

You can experiment with any of these ten stress relieving oils. If you’re not sure where to start, maybe try this little blend. Two drops of bergamot, two drops of lemon, one drop of geranium, one drop of spikenard. Add to your diffuser, your personal inhaler, make a body oil out of that. You can add all those and just mix that with about one ounce of coconut oil, or jojoba, or sweet almond – a carrier oil – and use that as a body oil, and see how it is.

This will help. This can help. We want to encourage you to find some solutions that you know are going to help you reduce anxiety and stress so that you’re actually looking forward to the holidays. That’s something for me. I really look forward to as much as I-

Mama Z: He talks about the Christmas cookies like-

Dr. Z: I look forward to our little traditions in our home. I also look forward, even though I hate the drive, I look forward to going to your mom and dad’s home. I look forward to the family time. I look forward to the fires. I look forward to the little traditions. I look forward to the kids in our home.

Mama Z: We try to do traditions regularly. We just ran in a race, the whole family, this last weekend. When we do that, just like I make for Easter, I make cinnamon rolls. The day after Christmas Eve, I take all the leftover rolls from Christmas, and I roll them in coconut oil, and I make a special … I call it non-cinnamon and sugar, because it’s not sugar at all. I roll the rolls in them, and then we serve them, and cut them open at breakfast. Whenever we do a running race, I have one or the other option. It was so funny. On mile marker two, Eric was telling me that my son was like-

Dr. Z: Oh, Isaiah? He’s something else.

Mama Z: “I am looking forward to the cinnamon rolls.I really-“

Dr. Z: We’re running.

Mama Z: “I really love cinnamon rolls. I love-“

Dr. Z: We’re in a big race, your local city race, and he just starts talking about, “I can’t wait for the butter. I can’t wait for the cinnamon roll.”

Mama Z: “I like the cinnamon.”

Dr. Z: He’s eight years old.

Mama Z: Yeah. And so-

Dr. Z: This lady, though. You missed it. This lady, she was really struggling. She had a stroller, her and her husband were huffing and puffing at two miles. They’re just like, “I could relate.” She just looked at him, and she heard, and she started chuckling, she goes, “That’s a man after my own heart, I could relate to that.” And here she is, like, “Ah, my buddy, stop talking about food. You’re going to cause people to stumble.”

Mama Z: Well, and then last night, I was talking about it at our mountain challenge. We had run up the mountain, and we’re riding back down. I was talking to one of the run club coaches, Coach Elizabeth, about Isaiah and his talking about cinnamon rolls. And then everybody else in the car was like, “Oh, my gosh, that sounds really good right now.”

Dr. Z: Yep.

Mama Z: They’re like, “I haven’t had your cinnamon rolls. Wait a second.” Ron, our friend-

Dr. Z: We love him.

Mama Z: He’s like, “I want some of those cinnamon rolls.” And Brandon. It was so funny. Create all your own traditions, too, because kids really love that. My kids know whenever we run a race together that I’m going to have cinnamon rolls if they finish. When they’re little, what I would say to Esther is that, “If you walk, you’re not getting any cinnamon rolls,” and then she would like never walk. She’s like, “I didn’t walk. I didn’t walk at all. I get my rolls, right?” I had it be a fun thing to do with them, and they’re healthy cinnamon rolls. You have the ability to change and make your own holidays and traditions.


[54:37 – 1:04:281:04:29 ] Healthy Habit 2: Boost Immunity & Remove Toxins

Dr. Z: Let’s go to healthy holiday habit number two: boosting immunity and removing toxins.

Mama Z: Big one.

Dr. Z: All right, here’s the bottom line. You’re not going to enjoy your holidays if you’re sick.

Mama Z: No.

Dr. Z: I mean, period.

Mama Z: There’s a lot of things that we can do to mitigate some of that stuff, like all of these body products that are scented with perfume and other things like that, that you have had around your house. It’s time to toss those things.

This blend that I used today, it’s three drops of lemon, two drops of bergamot, two drops of cinnamon, and one drop of vanilla oleoresin. Again, if you don’t have the vanilla, you don’t have to use it. But if you do, making body products, using that little blend, and mixing it with one ounce of a carrier oil, or an unscented lotion that’s organic, or one that you’ve made, or even my Mama Z’s Oil Base, using those products instead, I mean, you’re going to smell amazing. It’s also going to help boost your mood and your immunity, too.

Dr. Z: Yep. Stay tuned to the very end, which is coming up shortly, for our Natural Living Family tip, which is going to be a special immune boosting strategy. Because here’s something straight from CNN Health, quote, unquote, “Flu season reaches its height in late fall and early winter,” and this is because, people don’t realize this, “because viruses circulate better in the colder weather.” All right? This is according to Dr. Philip Tierno, director of microbiology and immunology at NYU’s Langone Medical Center.

We’re suggesting that right now you start to do those things that you know you have to do. Treat this like flu season, like it is. Treat this because you’re going to be around a lot of people, and you may or may not keep the food habits and diet that you should. We know that every time you eat anything sugary, like if you have a soda, your immune system will be compromised for about five to six hours.

This is proven, by the way. The neutrophils, your white blood cells, will be compromised because your body will view sugar like your body views a virus and bacteria. When you drink that Coke, when you’re having that eggnog, when you’re eating whatever you know you shouldn’t be, basically, you’re running on zero immune tank, if you look at your immune system as a tank, being full or being empty. You want to make sure you walk into the holidays with rocking solid, 100% functioning immune system, right?

Mama Z: Right.

Dr. Z: You need to go, and go back to the episode we did a few weeks ago about prepping for flu season, because we share with you our immune boosting shot.

Mama Z: We start doing that…If you are going to be traveling over the holiday, we start giving the kids that about a week before we travel, just to make sure … We’re going to be around a lot of other germs that we aren’t exposed to all the time. It’s just really important to keep our immune systems boosted.

Dr. Z: Yep. Anything else before we wrap up? Because we got about two points done, we’re going to do three next episode. We have five healthy holiday tips. But anything else about immune function that comes top of mind?

Mama Z: Yes. When you are deciding your diffuser blends, intersperse those immune boosting blends, whether you made your own, or you’ve done our immune boosting blend, which is equal parts of lemon, orange, cinnamon, clove, rosemary, and eucalyptus. No, wait.

Dr. Z: Yeah, that was right.

Mama Z: Yeah, that’s right. I don’t always do it in alphabetical order, which I probably should. But anyway, intermix that with the diffuser blends that you’re doing because it still smells a lot like the holidays, but you want to make sure that you’re breathing in those things.

If somebody, you can tell one of your family members has a compromised immune system, then instead of having a relaxation night diffuser blend, like for us, I usually make all of the upstairs diffusers the same at night. Have that immune boosting blend going throughout the night all the way upstairs and stuff like that as well. Just intermix it because that will help. You’re breathing that in. It’s really powerful to help build that and boost that immune system.

Dr. Z: Just think of it. Think about what happens, especially in the colder climates, right? If you’re in tropical area, you really can’t relate to this, but for those people that live in colder climates, especially in the States, or in Europe, or other places, just think about what happens every time this year. The weather gets colder, viruses are more active, flu becomes prevalent, stressors are on the high, people are eating junk food all over the place. It’s like a recipe for disease.

Mama Z: It is.

Dr. Z: I mean, it really, really is. If you’re smart about it, partly of what we’re trying to do is help you boost your immune system is eating the right food. This is not a sales pitch to buy our book, it really isn’t, but if you don’t know where to start, go get our book, The Essential Oils Diet, because we cover just dozens and dozens of healthy and even seasonal recipes. Go on our website,, and type up Mama Z’s-

Mama Z: Cranberry relish.

Dr. Z: … your gravy, and your cranberry relish, and your pumpkin pie, and coconut milk ice cream. There are-

Mama Z: Butternut squash soufflé-

Dr. Z: I love that.

Mama Z: … which can be a side dish, or it can be a dessert.

Dr. Z: Tons. Tons of naturally sweetened, allergy-friendly, which means no gluten, no dairy, no preservatives, things that most people are triggered by. You can enjoy. You can have your gluten-free pumpkin pie and eat it too, right?

Mama Z: Right.

Dr. Z: That’s what we’re trying to tell people.

Mama Z: Right. I make a lot of our own nut milks. I’ll actually use the nut meat that’s leftover, mix it together with a variety of different nut meats, or if you can’t do that, and you can do coconut, then I use the leftovers of the coconut. I mix that in together, and I have a blend that I make that is basically our easy gluten-free pie crust. What I do is, I have that on our website as just our regular gluten-free pie crust, and instead of flour, I’ll use the cups of this leftover nut meat, and then that’s what I use for the basis of our crust. It works amazing.

Dr. Z: Yep. If you’re looking for some more recipes, especially if you love Italian food, or if you love a variety of different salads, like dinner salads and appetizers, go to MamaZItalian, or You can go,

You get to watch a free screening of Mama Z’s cooking class. There are lots of ways, lots of good recipes. This is something, too, that I appreciate about … We’ll cover this in a future episode, but the meals that we cook are … We just don’t-

Mama Z: We just had Esther’s birthday party. I made what I do in my fall and Thanksgiving entertaining class. I made it kind of like a junior version, so to speak. I gave Esther the option. I’m like, “Do you want to have a birthday party out, or do you want to do it in?”

“I just want to do it in with friends and family. Can we have some of our fall traditional things?” That’s what we did. It was all fall. It makes it really fun. Start to collect your recipes together, staple them together, save them on the computer, bookmark them, if it’s on your phone. But have those together so you know what your staple recipes are. I bring those with me when we travel on the road because … and, of course, I have them in my computer. But it makes it so easy because we all look forward to certain things, and then there’s certain things that won’t be a winner. For the love of your family and the pickled herring-

Dr. Z: Oh, man.

Mama Z: … cut that off the list if it doesn’t make the cut. I’m just telling you, if that is, like, the 10th thing on the list that people are not looking forward to, then it doesn’t belong on the list and it doesn’t need to. Whip it out when … If you’re the only one that likes pickled herring, then save that for a January Saturday when you can just enjoy it on your own.

Dr. Z: I love it. I love it, love it, love it. You are going to want to stay tuned to the next episode because we’re going to be covering the third, fourth, and fifth tips. Just to recap, we are covering top five healthy holiday tips. This is more or less the Thanksgiving edition.

Sit back and relax, that’s number one, all about stress relieving and dealing with the potential stressors of the holidays. Number two is boosting immunity. Stay tuned to the Natural Living tip at the very end. We’re going to give you some next level tips on that.

Next episode, we’re going to cover more in depth about working out smarter, not harder, and being really disciplined, and using your time wisely because we definitely don’t want you to burn the candle at both ends. You need, especially, because it’s stress relief, because it’s so healthy, immune boosting, you need to be exercising. A lot of information is going to be covered on number four, BYOF, bring your own food. We’re going to wrap up next episode with number five, be truly thankful.

I’ll leave you with a little sneak peek of that. The bible says we enter God’s gates with thanksgiving, we enter His courts with praise. Hey, we call it Thanksgiving for a reason. We want to really reinforce, and give you, and help you find those things to be thankful for and be grateful for.


[1:04:29 -1:07:01] Natural Living Tip: Boosting Your Immune System

Mama Z: To wrap up today’s show, we have a Natural Living tip for you.

Dr. Z: Going back to Mama Z’s favorite immune boosting blend, again, equal parts of cinnamon bark, clove, eucalyptus, lemon, orange, and rosemary essential oils. You create this blend. We recommend getting ten drops of each of these oils and put it in an empty bottle. You can do an empty five milliliter bottle, if you want to, or you could do 20 drops of each, and put it into an empty 10 milliliter bottle. Label it, call it your immunity blend.

Here’s what you could do. First, we want to diffuse this into our room, like Mama Z was talking about. But for those of you, like myself, if you do get sick, it usually affects your throat. Why not make a mouthwash or a sore throat remedy from this? You can add one or two drops with one tablespoon witch hazel, one tablespoon baking soda, and one tablespoon coconut oil. You mix that with one cup of warm water, and you gargle that, and you spit that out. That could really help kill the strep throat, and also soothe and numb some of the pain because of the clove and the cinnamon.

Now, apply this blend diluted over your body. I would recommend applying it on your abdomen, on your children, make sure that it’s a 1% dilution, which is six drops of this immunity blend per one ounce of carrier oil. Simply put, get one ounce of coconut oil, one ounce of jojoba, whatever it might be, six drops of this immunity blend, and give your kids a nice back rub, a nice foot rub, or whatever, or maybe give your honey a foot rub, which Mama Z-

Mama Z: I would love that.

Dr. Z: She loves that at night. For colds and flus, we love to add one or two drops of this with one packet of Lypo-Spheric Vitamin C that you can find on Amazon, one teaspoon raw honey, one teaspoon coconut oil, one quarter teaspoon pumpkin pie spice or cinnamon, and a dash of pink Himalayan salt. We call this Dr. Z’s flu shot. I would say start taking this every other day if not daily for the next couple weeks because you do not want to be sick during the holidays.

And last of all, next level tip. What are you cleaning your counters with? Add 25 drops of this blend into a spray bottle with 15 ounces of distilled water. Add about 15, 20 drops of witch hazel, shake, and use on all your kitchen surfaces. This is a blend that’s been proven to kill bacteria, viruses, and fungi. It will make your home smell lovely, pumpkin pie spice-y at Thanksgiving, and make it healthy and strong as well.


[1:07:02 – 1:07:47]Sponsor Spotlight: Matcha Green Tea

Dr. Z: But before we dive into all the fun, we’re excited to share special note about today’s sponsor.

Mama Z: Are you looking to quit the coffee habit?

Dr. Z: Tired of the after cup of joe jitters, and the unfailing mid afternoon crash?

Mama Z: Well, we have a solution for you, and it’s called Matcha Green Tea.

Dr. Z: Matcha green tea is a staple in our house, because it is rich in antioxidants, can help your body fight disease, burn fat, and will give you sustained energy all day long.

Mama Z: If you’ve never tried matcha before, what are you waiting for? You and your kids are going to love it.

Dr. Z: Here’s the best part, our favorite brand is giving you a special starter discount as a gift because you are Natural Living Family Podcast listeners.

[1:07:47 – end] Episode WrapUp

All right, everyone, thank you so much for listening today. We hope you enjoyed the show. Can’t wait to finish part two next episode. As a reminder, you can find all of the Natural Living Family Podcast episodes, show notes, and transcripts for free on

While on our website, don’t forget to sign up for our weekly podcast newsletter, which includes a personal invite to join Mama Z and I in our 5,000 now person Facebook group that you can connect with us one-on-one, and meet other Natural Living lovers just like you. Don’t forget, please subscribe to our podcast and leave a review. We love hearing what you have to say about our show.

Well, as always, it’s Dr. Z.

Mama Z: And Mama Z.

Dr. Z: Our hope and prayer is that you and your family truly experience the abundant life, and that counts especially during the holidays. God bless you all.

Mama Z: Bye-bye.

Natural Living Family Podcast Episode Forty-Four Highlights: Healthy, Happy Holidays

  • Topic introduction…you’re in good company! (2:40)
  • Diffuser reveal and your reviews (8:20)
  • 5 healthy tips to survive the pressure of the holidays (12:56)
  • Dealing with holiday stress (23:04)
  • Combat holiday stress by being proactive (33:43)
  • Tips for making a stressful holiday enjoyable (38:37)
  • Healthy Habit #1: 7 ways to relieve your stress (48:32)
  • Healthy Habit #2: Boosting immunity & removing toxins (54:37)
  • Natural living tip and episode wrap (1:04:29)

Favorite Quotes from Episode 44 – Healthy, Happy Holidays

“Remember, you get to select the things that you want to create your own holiday traditions.” – Mama Z

“My mom always said family is what you make it. It’s the people that you decide to be around.” – Mama Z

“It is important to be proactive against holiday stress and mental duress before it becomes an issue. This includes taking measures to combat anxiety, depression, loneliness, and stress.” – Dr. Z

“Use the five Ps this holiday: proper planning prevents poor performance. We do that because we’ve done it badly but when you do it well, then you want to continue to do it well.” – Mama Z

“The bible says we enter God’s gates with thanksgiving, we enter His courts with praise. Hey, we call it Thanksgiving for a reason! We want to help you find things to be thankful for.” – Dr. Z

Healthy, Happy Holidays (Part 1) - Podcast Episode 44


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