Welcome to that time of the year when holiday gifts and hostess gifts are at the top of the list of things that are likely stressing YOU!
We all want our holiday gifts to be “special and unique”, right? But sometimes that means we take creative license on what our loved ones and friends may really want.
Additionally, we often don’t purchase a gift that supports others’ health goals. No processed and sugary treats, all kinds of alcohol, and cheese and sausage gift baskets aren't going to work. It’s so odd that we often buy gifts that we typically wouldn’t purchase for ourselves, like do-it-yourself SMORES kits, and more!
You can do better!
So this year, give the special people in your life gifts that help THEM be healthier. Make the gifts special by personalizing them and ensuring they come from the heart. Also, think about what they will really use. Just because you think it will be good for them, they make not agree.
Here are a few examples of some truly unique – and healthy – gifts you can give this year:
Spice Up Your Health!
Kick start someone’s health with a “Healthy Spices” gift basket. Add healing spices such as blood sugar friendly cinnamon (great for balancing out those holiday blood sugar spikes), turmeric (a powerful anti-inflammatory), some digestion-supporting spices (ginger, coriander seeds/cilantro, cardamom, and fennel seeds will all help with those large holiday meals), and maybe a good probiotic or digestive enzymes.
Add a pretty bottle of garlic infused olive or avocado oil and a favorite sea salt. Put everything in a pretty basket or bowl. Add a favorite healthy recipe, hand-written from your heart, and you are done!
Give the opportunity for some “Self-Love”
People don’t often take time for themselves, especially around the holidays. Among other things, they may be stressed out with financial or family obligations. So why not give them the opportunity to pamper themselves? Give someone the gift of “self-love”. Yes, a gift containing a few of the perfect items for a lovely soothing, de-stressing bath, but much more. The most important part of this gift? Tucking in a personal thank you note. Tell your family member or friend why they are so special, and how their taking a moment to themselves to relax is acknowledgement of that.
Package up some epsom salts, your favorite essential oil (lavender, chamomile, or frankincense are good for a healthy soak), a meditation CD, and a pretty candle. Purchase a beeswax candle, which is non-toxic and actually works to purify indoor air. You can also get beeswax candles infused with essential oils.
In your thank you note, you can add your favorite hot soak recipe! Maybe suggest two cups of Epsom salt for 20-30 minutes, with a dozen or so drops of oil. The recipient will enjoy the relaxing and soothing soak, the special time to treat themselves with a gift of a little love, and they will feel the appreciation you have relayed.
I often find that people give gifts that don’t support the health goals people have said they are trying to achieve. If you know someone is trying to eat gluten-free or vegan, why would you give them a gift that isn’t in alignment with their chosen dietary lifestyle? True, you don’t always know. But I like the idea of tailoring a gift to people with their lifestyle choices in mind. Nuts, seeds, and herbs are often safe choices. Make sure you are aware if they have any allergies or intolerances before you give them something with this in it.
Nuts are incredibly healthy. Most nuts, besides being packed with protein, contain heart-healthy nutrients such as unsaturated fats, L-arginine, and omega-3 fatty acids, are anti-inflammatory, and so much more. Make sure to purchase organic. Some healthy favorites are almonds, walnuts, pecans, and Brazil nuts, along with pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds.
Some good herbs to share are chamomile, calendula, and echinacea. Nuts, seeds, and herbs are the perfect gift that satisfies anyone’s dietary lifestyle.
For that special someone (okay, maybe along with the jewelry or golf club they really want!), give a basket of foods long known to help stir up some passion. This basket can contain any combo of these special foods, along with an intimate love note, of course:
- Almonds – aroma is supposed to induce passion in a female.
- Avocados – the Aztecs called the tree the “testicle tree”.
- Chocolate – contains PEA, a neurotransmitter that stimulates a feeling of love and connection.
- Figs – an open fig is said to resemble the female sex organs and has been traditionally thought of as sexual stimulant.
- Garlic – is said to stir sexual desires.
- Pine Nuts – have been used to stimulate the libido as far back as medieval times.
- Raspberries and Strawberries– are described in erotic literature as fruit nipples.
- Vanilla – the scent and flavor is believed to increase lust.
- Pumpkin Seeds – good for boosting sex drive because they’re high in zinc, which is also important in testosterone production. They’re also a good source of omega-3 fats, which aid in balancing hormones.
- Saw Palmetto – this herb can be used to treat both male and female low libido conditions. It works by triggering the body to produce the right hormones to aid in sexual drive.
Listen to this audio I did a few years ago on the topic of libido! This is a common issue in relationships. Maybe my audio will give you an idea or two to warm things up!
The Gift of You!
And finally, make a homemade IOU coupon that involves your time, or maybe an expertise that you have. Have an elderly neighbor? Maybe a coupon for a day in the yard. Not sure what to give your niece? What’s HER passion? Theater? Give her an IOU for an upcoming performance, or wrap up ONE ticket for her and purchase another one for you to take her. Handy with household chores? Maybe an IOU to a less handy in-law to help them fix that long-standing issue in their home?
When you give the gift of YOU, and fulfill on it, you connect to the recipient in a way that a simple gift just can’t do. Seeing the gratitude on the recipient's fact will generate oxytocin for you as well as them! SOOOO much better than giving a packaged cookie assortment, do-it-yourself SMORES kit, or other “seasonal temptations” you may usually buy. Hint: the only reason you buy these types of unhealthy things for people is it is EASY; but my thinking is, if you really want to give someone a gift, it shouldn't really be something you don't have to give a little thought to. Don't you agree?
Another fun thing is to give a gift involving a hobby or interest, but bundle yourself as part of it. So, for a friend who enjoys cooking, give them a favorite healthy recipe along with an IOU for you to be co-chef with their making the dish one night. Oh, and you’ll do the organic grocery shopping of course.
Final words on giving healthier gifts!
Knowing you’ve given a unique, customized and healthy gift will make you feel like you are expressing true appreciation to the recipient. Isn’t that what gift giving is supposed to be about? Thanking the special people in your life?
We know from research that feeling gratitude improves digestion, immunity, energy levels, mood and overall health!
And that gratitude flows both ways, supporting both gift giver and recipients’ happiness and health.
Comments? What are some healthy gifts that you give during the holidays? Would love to share them with my community,
For ideas on healthy gifts, join my VITAL Health Community. I've shared many ways you can create fun with food there.