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This adaptogen-boosted elixir is your secret weapon for stress-free holidays


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Photos: Carliann Rittman
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The holidays shouldn’t leave you feeling like you need a vacation. Whether buying gifts sucks the life out of you or super-charged political “conversations” (read: arguments) with your family wear you out, it can be hard to completely avoid the stress and exhaustion that often comes hand-in-hand with ornaments and candy canes.

Even if you’ve mastered self-care and calming breathing techniques, your body could use a little extra support. (Your adrenals? They’re probably under a bit of stress….) Jamie Graber—founder of New York City vegan raw food eatery Gingersnap’s Organic and detox guru extraordinaire—totally understands. “While the holidays are a joyous time, they can be quite stressful as well,” she says.

Luckily, Graber’s got a secret weapon that will calm both you and your body down with just a few slow sips.

Her mood-enhancing, stress-reducing elixir relies on powerful, natural herbs to make it so successful. “The mucuna promotes a happy mood, and the ashwagandha is great to help with cortisol levels,” Graber explains. Eucommia, an herb that has your back when it comes to your joints and flexibility, is an added bonus to help your body unwind after a long day (or weekend).

Feeling stressed? Try this bliss-boosting drink to help you keep calm—recipe below!

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gingersnap's organic get blissed destressing elixir recipe

Gingersnap’s Organic Get Blissed Elixir

Serves 1

Ingredients
For the elixir:
1/2 cup homemade almond milk (see recipe below)
1/2 cup water
1/2 tsp ashwagandha
1/4–1/2 tsp mucuna pruriens (if you’ve never tried the herb, start with 1/4 tsp)
1/2 tsp eucommia
Pinch of cinnamon

For the almond milk (yields about 32 oz milk):
1 cup washed organic raw almonds, soaked overnight
3 cups filtered water
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 Tbsp coconut palm sugar
Pinch of sea salt

1. To make the almond milk, blend the soaked almonds and water on low, speeding up as you go. Avoiding running the blender on full blast, which will heat it up. When all nuts are broken down, strain the milk through a nut milk bag, squeezing any remaining liquid out.

2. Put nut milk back in the blender with vanilla, coconut palm sugar, and sea salt. Blend on low to combine.

3. Heat water until warm, but not too hot to touch.

4. Add ashwagandha, mucuna pruriens, and eucommia. Stir until there are no chunks.

5. Steam almond milk. If you don’t have a steamer, heat almond milk on the stove, being careful not to let it come to a boil.

6. Pour steamed almond milk over herbs and enjoy warm.

Each week we spotlight a healthy-delish recipe that’s truly genius (and easy to make) from someone who’s wowed us in the food world. We’re talking buzzy cookbook authors and Instagram foodies to brilliant chefs. Consider this the healthy dish you’ve got to make (and share) right now! 

While this elixir can’t make holiday traffic disappear, a mindfulness practice made for commuters will add a bit of peace to your travels. Or if cooking for a crowd is stressing you out, these seven holiday dishes are as easy as they are delicious.

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