The Holiday Season – Don’t Hit REPEAT This Year…

Like many other people, I enjoy the holiday season.  I listen to the Christmas satellite radio station in my car.  I love the decorations – blinking lights, lush reds, and shiny golds.  I enjoy the smell of fresh pine.  I look forward to the musical specials on TV.  I love singing in my choir’s Holiday concert.

What I don’t love is the spirit of consumerism that pervades everything – my inbox gets filled with promotional emails, I get catalogs from all kinds of places, my family receives unnecessary gifts from both random and not so random people and I myself start going down a list of “must give” gifts.

This year is going to be different.  I am embracing meaningful gift giving – using gifts that transmit my values with the recipient in mind.  What do I mean?  As a Health Coach, I know that there is nothing more precious than our health.  There is a saying that always speaks to me:

“A healthy person has a thousand wishes, a sick person only has one”.

So why not give gifts that promote health and wellness?  Why not allow those you love to lead more healthful lives? Here are some of my favorite examples:

Spiralizer – this kitchen gadget can turn a zucchini, carrot, beet or sweet potato into healthy, low-carb, grain-free noodles to be used instead of pasta.  It’s a great way to get more vegetables into the diet.  I use mine to make zucchini and yellow squash noodles as a base for chili.  Or to spiralize sweet potatoes and make hash browns in the oven. Prices range from around $10 for basic starter models to around $50 for those with more features. A variety of inexpensive cookbooks and online recipes help those new to spiralizing with recipe ideas.

National Parks Pass – I am thankful to my daughter and her husband for the idea – they included this on their wedding registry.  For $80, you can gift someone you love with a year’s worth of admission to any national park!  The benefits of nature are endless, not the least of which is the fact that most parks have poor cell service, allowing us to disconnect from those digital devices.

NutriBullet – whoever came up with this appliance is a genius.  A small blender which can liquefy most vegetables, chop herbs and spices, turn nuts and seeds into flour and do so much more.  I use mine after workouts for a healthy smoothie and to turn chia seeds into a delicious pudding.  This is a great gift especially for a newbie or for someone living in small place.  Prices range from $79 to $129.  No need to invest in a Cadillac of blenders such as a Vitamix or a Blendtec when this appliance can do so much!

HeartMath device – who doesn’t know about the deleterious effects of stress?  Some studies estimate that as many as 50% of doctor’s visits are either caused by or compounded by stress.  Enter HeartMath.  A device designed to train our body into coherence by regulating our breathing and affecting HRV – Heart Rate Variability.  This device can improve cognition and mental health, lower blood pressure, improve sleep, increase resilience and so much more!  Prices range from $119 for a model that works with smartphones to $299 for a stand-alone device.  Don’t miss the 25% off holiday special running now!

I could go on and on – the ideas are endless.  I would be proud to gift any of these to the people I love.  Yes, they are not as soft as a new cashmere sweater or as shiny as a new piece of jewelry.  But in terms of health promotion – these are priceless.  Don’t hit REPEAT this year with your gift giving.  Choose something different – show those you love that you care about their health and wellbeing.

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