Holiday Gift Picks for the Health Conscious

Christmas morning 1980 at our house!

Christmas morning 1980 at our house!

How was your Thanksgiving & (hopefully long) weekend? My Thanksgiving was good but a bit busy! Friday I went to a birthday party for one of my nieces and Saturday & Sunday I did some puttering about the house and worked on some of my genealogy projects (which I don’t get much time on since I started my own business).  It’s one of my favorite ways to spend my free time and if I’m tied up with my research then it frees John to spend the weekend playing video games with his brother. Good for all of us! Haha.

I over-indulged a little bit and I’m excited to get back to normal eating – my 1st round of the 12 Day Detox started yesterday so it’s back to clean eating for me and the women who are joining me in that group (want in? see #3 below!).

With Thanksgiving behind us and December here (how did that happen!?) most of us are starting to scamper about to get Christmas gifts on our friends and families wish lists. Some of you are already finished I’m sure!  I get inspiration for gift giving sometimes by hearing what others are giving so I put together a list of my favorite things for health minded folks in the hopes that it inspires some of you!

What are your go to healthy gift ideas?

Holiday Gift Picks for the Newly Health Conscious

1. A good blender – high speed and high power. If you or your health minded family members don’t already have a high powered blender, get one! It doesn’t have to be super high end, it just needs to be powerful to break up greens and other vegetables to palatable textures. If you only occasionally dabble in smoothies then a lower powered one will work just fine but if you want to be able to make a variety of drinks daily and not be held back by your machine’s motor – power is where it’s at. I got a Vitamix for my birthday a few years ago and while yes, it was pricey, I can tell you it has already paid for itself. I use it almost every day – mostly for smoothies but I also use it for soups, hummus, cashew sour cream, sorbet, popsicles and other tasty treats.  There are foods that I would have opted to buy store bought in the past that are now simple to make because I have a good blender. Maybe the Vitamix is a little out of reach right now, I hear great things about the nutribullet and it’s a lot more affordable.

2. Massage.  Massage is a wonderful way to care for yourself (or someone else). Massage has been proven to lower stress levels, blood pressure and reduce pain and muscle tension.  Since most of us are very stressed and tense this time of the year, the gift of massage is an awesome way to counter it! And many people are not very good about giving themselves this type of gift (the gift of time and relaxation) so it’s even more important. If you don’t have a massage therapist, I can recommend a couple in NH/MA that I think very highly of. Marcia Rumore at Innovations in Merrimack, NH, Amanda Holt at Body Mechanix in Dover, NH, and Sarah George of Newburyport, MA.  They’re all very talented and caring women who know what they’re doing.

3. The 12 Day Natural Detox.  I couldn’t call myself an entrepreneur if I didn’t put at least one shameless plug in this post.  Why spend January working off pounds you gain in December? With 12 days of whole foods eating, you won’t have to work so hard after New Years. I have a group starting 12/13 and the last day to sign up is this Saturday 12/6. (This is the sole item on this list that I receive compensation from if you purchase it.)  I won’t sugar-coat it, it’s hard to change your eating habits, but it’s a lot easier when you have support and other people are going through it with you.

4. Naturopathica’s Lavender Blossom Bath & Body Oil.  I heart all things Naturopathica and they’re having a Cyber Monday sale through end of day today (Tuesday). Perfect for the person who needs to learn to relax but doesn’t have time to! When you get out of the shower, spend a couple of minutes massaging this scented oil into your skin for a relaxed start to your day (and for really soft moisturized skin).  I love Naturopathica because they focus on using natural ingredients (and organic where possible) and they never use parabens, glycols, chemical sunscreens, synthetic fragrances or animal products in their products.  Many of their products are also gluten free and vegan (and they’re well marked). Anyone on your list who cares about their skin and needs to relax can benefit from this one.

5. Glass straws! If you’ve become aware of the health risks associated with eating & drinking out of plastic and are slowly swapping out plastic containers for glass or ceramic in your house, then you may also want to look into glass straws (especially good for the person who loves smoothies – as many are hard to drink without a straw).  Why go all that effort only to put a plastic straw directly in your mouth? Two US companies that make a variety of high quality glass straws are Glass Dharma and Strawesome. I only use straws when I’m on the go and need to drink my smoothie in the car but I love having something reusable.

6. A gift card for a higher end exercise clothing store (like Athleta, Lululemon or Lucy).  Let’s face it, these stores are too expensive to buy without one! Yes, you can buy sweatpants and a tank at any store for a lot cheaper and you can workout in anything but I know I’m more motivated to workout when I have clothes that fit well and look good on me than I am when my workout clothes make me feel dumpy.  I’ll be the first to admit that these places are crazy pricey (I save up my Discover Card points and turn them in for gift cards!!!) but their stuff lasts, fits beautifully and some of it is even pretty enough to wear in public when you’re not working out. I’m an Athleta fan personally! With a gift card, you’re helping someone buy a gift that will motivate them to workout all year long. (And if they wait to use it during a sale – it’s a really good value!)

7. Michael Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma.  A great read for anyone interested in learning more about where their food comes from and the relationship our food choices have with our environment.

8. Purchase a healthy meal delivery for your favorite family from All Real Meal.  They deliver to the Manchester & Nashua areas and meals are gluten free and refined sugar free.  I always advocate for cooking your own meals at home but sometimes we are too busy – a home cooked meal by someone else is almost always healthier than takeout or the drive through!

I hope you enjoy these ideas for healthy holiday gifts! And if you don’t have anyone on your list who would benefit from any of these, you might consider buying something for yourself. In all the giving and doing for others that we do this time of year, we often forget about ourselves – we don’t need to actually buy ourselves a physical gift but it’s important to remember that taking good care of ourselves isn’t a luxury – it’s a necessity!

What are your favorite healthy gifts to give or receive? Share in the comments!
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