Healthy Holiday Gift Ideas

by | Dec 18, 2018 | Living Well

In my other life, I am a part-time Gift Guru, a finder of unique and luxurious gift options for Corporate America. The majority of the items I search for fall into the “Latest Tech” and “Name Brand Accessories” categories, which is definitely fun. But what really butters my biscuit is marrying my two careers and searching for gifts that are not only fun, exciting, special, luxurious, but also improve one’s life or health in some way.

Despite being a self proclaimed Gift Guru, I am actually quite challenged when it comes to giving gifts to my own friends and family. What if they don’t like it? What if it’s too expensive? Not expensive enough? What if I totally miss the mark and they suddenly think…does she even KNOW me??? It sometimes feels like the future of the world depends on my gift choice. Yeah. I know. It’s exhausting. And that is why I have put together a quick list of Healthy Holiday Gift Ideas for your last minute shopping, because who doesn’t like a gift that makes them feel better???

#1 Aromatherapy Diffusers and Pure Essential Oil Blends

 

Essential Oils have gained massive popularity these past few years. We’re using them for everything from homemade bath and body products to pain and stress relief and I fully support the movement. If you’re a DoTerra or Young Living fan, then chances are I’m preaching to the choir. But if you still haven’t dabbled in the world of essential oils, let me be the first to welcome you into this therapeutic community.

I’ve been making my own cleaning products for a decade now, but I only just recently bought my first aromatherapy diffuser last year. DOH! Like many, I was hooked on room sprays and scented candles. However, these products are generally anything but clean. According to Senior Scientist at EWG Rebecca Sutton, air fresheners in any form (candle or otherwise) commonly include phthalates and other potentially hazardous ingredients. Sutton cautions that even essential oils are highly concentrated and may trigger allergies in sensitive individuals (2011). And while I don’t disagree with Sutton, I think purchasing pure essential oils and using them in a diffuser is not only a great way to freshen a room, but is a fantastic tool for winding down at the end of the day.

Aromatherapy diffusers come in many shapes, sizes, and functions. My favorites include not only a diffuser function, but mood lighting and bluetooth capabilities, as well. I love options like this one for anyone with sleep issues. The quiet stream of essential oils puts the body at ease and bluetooth syncing allows the user to listen to peaceful music or a bedtime meditation. WINNING! For essential oils, I love Saje’s diffuser blends. They have brick and mortar stores through the US where you can go and sniff some samples before committing to a purchase. And if doTerra is your jam, then check out my friend and expert, Jen over at Natural Wellness Tips. She knows more about essential oils than anyone I know.

#2 The Famous Instant Pot

 

It took me a while to jump on this band wagon as well. Why did I need another kitchen gadget taking up precious real estate in my cupboards when I already had a perfectly good soup pot and knew how to make rice? Because this is a busy Mom (or Dad)’s Miracle Meal Maker, y’all! FOR REAL! Beans and rice in half the time? YES PLEASE! One pot meals quickly and easily? Where have you been all my life you sweet SWEET hunk of programmable pressure cooker???

I use this bad boy to make dinner, like my Lentil Chili Stuffed Sweet Potatoes, at least once a week. As mentioned above, it is also THE perfect tool for batch cooking your beans, rice, and other staples, thus shaving of considerable time on those Food Prep days. The Instant Pot comes in 6Qt and 8Qt sizes with several different setting options. This is the model that I have and, in case you haven’t yet gathered how I feel about this precious gem…I. LOVE. IT.

#3 CBD Oil

 

Medicinal CBD oil, or Cannabidiol, for optimal health and wellness is becoming more mainstream across the country. I get asked DAILY about which products are best and whether or not clients should use it. CBD oil has become a reputable source for dealing with a laundry list of ailments such as anxiety, arthritic pain, autoimmune disorders, and even cancer. If you’re a skeptic, like me, you may be wondering…how can this oil be so good for everyone? Sounds a bit snake-oily, lady! This is a whole other blog, and one that I plan on getting to next year, but CBD oil really IS all it’s cracked up to be, generally speaking, of course! The endocannabinoid system, or the system in the body that makes cannabis like substances naturally, is a critical player in homeostasis. This system helps regulate things like appetite, mood, the central nervous system, pain, apoptosis (programmed cell death), and reproductive health (Chanda, Neumann, and Glatz, 2019). And the coolest thing about this system is that it is self regulated, meaning that it works where it is most needed (Wright, 2018). I like CBD oil most for those with chronic pain and inflammatory conditions, so if you have someone on your Christmas list dealing with one of these conditions, Mary’s Nutritionals “The Remedy” oil may be the perfect gift! It’s a great tool to use for those trying to prevent cancer, as well. A word of caution: those with estrogenic cancers should avoid using CBD oil, as it can actually promote cancer growth in these individuals. Always talk to your doctor before starting on a new supplement.

#4 The Treadly

 

The World Health Organization recommends adults ages 18-64 engage in a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate to intense exercise every week for general health (2018). But with more and more adults working longer hours and leading sedentary lifestyles, getting any amount of exercise in is a challenge. Enter Treadly!

Certainly not the cheapest item on the list, Treadly is a revolutionary new way to make exercise more accessible. At roughly 4 1/2 ft. long by 2 ft. wide and less than 5 in. high, the Treadly can be stored almost anywhere! But don’t let the compact size fool you. The aluminum alloy construction is sturdy, and while I haven’t yet had the privilege off using one myself (hook a sister up, Treadly!), I am told by close friends that this little treadmill is LEGIT!

Still not sold on this tiny bundle of cardio joy? Another cool feature is it’s hands free system. Stepping to the front of the belt allows you to gain speed up to 5 miles per hour (when the fold-able safety handrail is lifted), while inching toward the back will make the belt slow down. PLUS…it comes in PINK, ladies!!! Clunky gym-style treadmills will run you upwards of $2000, but Treadly is offering a holiday sale right now for only $699! And if you don’t have that kind of cheddar chilling in your bank account right now, financing options are available. Some things to consider before taking the plunge and investing in the Treadly; it works best on hardwood floors, needs at least a 5″ clearance to be stored under furniture, and has a maximum weight limit of 220 lbs.

#5 A Gift Certificate With Yours Truly

 

 

The verdict is in! What we put into our bodies everyday GREATLY impacts our overall health and wellness. If you haven’t yet heard of Nutrigenomics, trust me…you WILL. Nutrigenomics is the study of how what we eat turns our genes on or off. A couple of decades ago, we thought that our destiny was marked by our genes alone. Now, we know that genetics only play a small role in our health outcomes and it is our diet and exercise regimen that greatly impacts HOW these genes express themselves. Bottom line: eating healthfully can help you feel better and live longer!!!

But with the vast array of knowledge available on the internet, why do you need to meet with a nutritionist? Can’t I just google it, Amberly? Maybe! If you have the time to do the research, then go for it! I fully support learning, especially when it comes to your health. However, if you’re like most people and you have a day job, kids, a life…leave it to the experts (ME) to help figure out how nutrition and lifestyle can improve your wellbeing. Are you or a friend looking to do a detox in 2019? Sign up for the New Year Reset! Looking to start off a little slower and address a specific concern? Then booking an Initial Consultation (90 minute visit) is a great first step in the right direction. Use coupon code HEALTHYHOLIDAY and receive $20 off ALL SERVICES between now and Christmas!

References:

Chanda, C., Neumann, D., & Glatz, J., (2019). The endocannabinoid system: Overview of an emerging multi-faceted therapeutic target. Prostaglandins, Leukotrienes, and Essential Fatty Acids, 140, 51-56.

Sutton, R., (2011). Your best air freshener isn’t an air freshener. EWG News and Analysis. Retrieved from: https://www.ewg.org/enviroblog/2011/09/your-best-air-freshener-isnt-air-freshener

M. Wright, Cannabis and CBD Webinar, December 13, 2018.

Amberly Rowland

Integrative Nutritionist

I’m Amberly, a Clinical & Integrative Nutritionist. I help women who’ve had cancer go from just “surviving” to THRIVING by amping up their nutrition, reducing stress, and teaching them how to be in the present moment.

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