2021 Holiday Gift Guide: 14 Thoughtful Wellness Gifts
After the year we’ve all experienced, it’s safe to say that we can all benefit from giving (or receiving) the gift of wellness. From food and fitness products to gifts that promote relaxing and recharging, here are some of my top picks for wellness gift ideas to suit an array of people in your life.
For home chefs and foodies
- Consider a membership or gift certificate to the local farmers market (or a stack of wooden tokens, the ‘currency” of the Crescent City Farmers Market), paired with an herb garden starter kit.
- Give them a wellness-focused cookbook (of course we highly recommend the Eat Fit Cookbook), along with several key ingredients to make one of the recipes inside. Find a full list of retailers or order online at EatFitCookbook.com.
- Chefs often offer the option of preparing a healthful meal made in your home. Just like a restaurant, they’ll propose dinner menus that can range from the basics to an exquisite “chef’s tasting table,’’ right in the comfort of the recipient’s home.
- Spicy or herby, homemade infused olive oil makes a versatile, long-lasting gift. I like to use clear glass bottles with a swing-top, latch-style lid, then use paint pens to write the description of the oil and a holiday greeting down the side of the bottle.
- Gift friends and family your own handmade baked goodies. Opting for gluten-free flours, plant-based sweeteners in place of sugar and coconut oil in place of butter when possible ensures that your holiday sweets will fit a variety of nutritional needs. Homemade goodies are also a great way to introduce loved ones to better-for-you alternatives to holiday favorites. A few ideas: Candy Cane Cookies, Dark Chocolate Rum Balls, Banana Bread and low-carb Lemon Peppermint Scones.
For folks on the go
- Meal delivery companies make it easy to stick with healthful eating, no matter how busy they are. Give them a week’s worth (or more) of pre-made meals to get them started.
- Fresh-pressed juice delivery services from juice bars like The Green Fork make it easy for us to get our daily intake of produce with weekly delivery of healthful juices. Juices are all made to order so gift recipients can customize exactly what they want, from organic ingredients that are locally sourced as much as possible.
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For fitness buffs and workout newbies
- Gifting a series of fitness classes or services is an easy, evergreen wellness idea, especially if it’s something they wouldn’t typically do for themselves. Think: a package of sessions with a registered dietitian or licensed acupuncturist, or a series of Pilates or yoga classes that you can do together.
- Workout apparel and gear is always appreciated by fitness enthusiasts. Not sure about size or fit? You can't go wrong with a cold-weather athletic scarf or wrap, or a stylish workout tote. My all-time favorite brands include Louisiana-based Tasc Performance, Sweaty Betty and Prana, and I always love the quality and style of Athleta and Lululemon. And of course I’m a big fan of our Eat Fit Apparel; the Eat Fit NOLA baseball cap and muscle tee are practically part of my daily uniform!
- The New Me Yoga Mat ensures you never forget a yoga pose. Seventy poses are printed directly on the mat, making it a perfect gift for kids and yoga novices alike.
- Foam rollers aren’t exactly romantic, but they sure are effective, serving to relieve even the deepest muscle tension.
- Kettlebells are among the most versatile pieces of exercise equipment, plus they’re compact, making them a great fit for the fitness buff in your life.
- The Theragun Massager, a handheld deep tissue therapy device, is a game-changer, relieving muscle tension with a precisely-calibrated combination of depth, speed and power. It’s perfect for athletes or anyone who struggles with chronically tight and sore muscles.
Editor’s note: Registered dietitian Molly Kimball offers brand-name products as a consumer guide; she does not solicit product samples nor is she paid to recommend items.
This article was originally published December 7, 2020.