Tis the season of giving and there is no better year to give the gift of Health and Wellness. I encourage you to shop local and handmade to help support small business who are struggling. Etsy.com is a great place to start for personalized, handmade gifts for every interest on your list.
I also enjoy giving gifts that can be used all year. From kitchen gadgets that save time to self care items that provide a level of rest and relaxation. Here is a list of 10 gifts worthy of giving to loved ones you wish health and happiness to in the new year:. Disclaimer, I have included affiliate links but have only linked to items I myself would gift to loved ones.
1. Instant Pot
Confession. I received an Instant Pot last year for Christmas. I gave the gift giver the "Oh, I always wanted one of these" while thinking "I am never going to use this." My initial reaction was admittedly wrong and that baby now has a home in my kitchen and used on a weekly basis. The speedy pressure cooking has replaced my original method of making hard boiled eggs and spaghetti squash and I love that I can throw frozen chicken in and have dinner ready in under 30 minutes.
2. Chef's Knife
If there is one tool every kitchen should have, that would be a decent Chef's knife. I have personally witnessed people changing their view on cooking after investing in quality tools. I know it seems more codt efficient to purchase a $20 knife at Target, but I promise, it will not begin to match the ease of a quality tool. I received my first set of J.A. Henckels knives when I got married 14 years ago. With care and proper sharpening, the investment has paid off as I am still using them today. With some knife skill lessons and practice, your loved ones will find a love for home cooking.
3. Dutch Oven
There is nothing like the smell and taste of homemade soup, stew or chili simmering on the stove. Or the ease of browning a roast on the stovetop and transferring it directly to the oven in the same pot. A Dutch Oven Is a versatile pot that no kitchen should be without. The cast iron helps food cook and heat evenly and the ceramic coating is safer for health and the environment than non-stick coatings. The pot can go from stovetop to oven to fridge and is easy to clean. My boys are known to make a mean cobbler in ours.
4. Hello Fresh
So you know someone who wants to prepare more home cooked meals but just doesn't have the skill to gather ingredients. measure, chop, dice and slice. No problem. Meal delivery kits are popping up everywhere with every dietary lifestyle in mind. During sport season when I am short on time, I will often schedule a meal or two a week so I know I have everything I need. My favorite meal kit to date is Hello Fresh. They work with y budget, have meals for my pickiest eater, fresh ingredients and, most important, easy to make. This is a great way to introduce cooking to a newbie. Send a gift card and then sit back and brag about how you taught them to cook!
5. FitBit Charge 4
For the loved one who loves to track their health and wellness, the FitBit Charge 4 is one of the simpler activity tracker I have used. I really enjoy the sleek design (I am not a fan of the chunkier style of some Smart watches) and it gives great feedback in regards to steps taken, heart rate, calories burned and sleep. I can use the website or app to challenge friends and track my food intake. This tracker makes a great gift for the fitness techie in your life.
6. Earbuds with Charger Case
Confession #2...I am a headphone hoarder. At least I was until I was gifted these iFrogz Earbuds with Charging Case. I never thought I would be one to use earbuds. I always preferred headphones that went around my ears so I knew they would not fall out. I decided to give these a try and I never looked back! They connect easily to my iPhone through Bluetooth, have a great sound and stay put even during a run or HIIT workout. I love that they recharge in the case and that the case holds a charge for quite some time. Bonus: they are more affordable than other earbuds I have seen.
Who wouldn't want the gift of Calm? 2020 has certainly left its share of stress and worry. Meditation and mindfulness has been scientifically proven to help reduce stress and the harmful hormones that produced as well as make us happier. But where do you start? Our minds are constantly racing, thoughts keep us up at night. The Calm app was designed to help people of all levels and experience begin a mindful practice. From 5 minute meditations to sleep stories and masterclasses, your stressed loved ones are sure to find peace when they redeem the gift card you gifted. This is one I recommend you treat yourself with too. We could all use a little peace and calm this time of year!
8. Essential Oil Diffuser and Essential Oils
Essential oils are popping up all over the place. I even found them mixed in with shower gel at my grocery store. Not all essential oils are created equally and it is important you are purchasing oils that are of high quality for your safety and the safety of your loved ones and pets. I recommend doing your research before purchasing and using Eden's Garden when selecting your favorite scents. Diffusing oils is one of my favorite ways to stimulate and energize in the morning and relax in the evening. Gift a diffuser to a loved one, create a personalized gift set of oils to match their personality or find a variety of self care items like roller bottles and after shower oils.
9. Humidifier with Essential Oil Diffuser
Ready to up your Essential Oil Diffuser game? The dry air really does a number on my sinus impaired boys. It is no secret that a humidifier can replace the much needed moisture stripped from forced heat and winter dryness. My game changer was finding this Homasy Cool Mist Humidifier. Not only is it top filling, it also doubles as an essential oil diffuser. I love that I can diffuse my Eden's Gardens essential oils that support immune health, help keep breathing clear and help relax the mind as we sleep. It also keeps the room less cluttered by having two products in one.
10. Personalized Journal
Did you know that taking a moment each day to write down three tings you are grateful for can actually make you happier? There is research that says keeping a gratitude journal can rewire your brain for happiness. All it takes is a daily habit of writing three things you are grateful for. We all have time to write three things. Wouldn't it be extra special if you had a personalized journal just for this daily activity? I recommend heading on over to Etsy.com and supporting a small business or local crafter. You are sure to find a journal for every person on your list. Add a personalized pen and now there is no excuse to be grateful each day.
The gift of time spent with family and loved ones can never be replaced. 2020 has kept some from seeing loved ones while others have been brought closer together through quarantine. I would like to wish each and every one of you a healthy and happy holiday season. Please stay safe and may 2021 bring peace and joy.
"Your test lit up like a Christmas Tree"
Words muttered by the doctor at the walk in while I sat in the stale exam room with my body aches and chills. I was now a statistic for the News to report, clumping me into the other hundreds who would test positive for COVID-19. I tell you this not for sympathy or comments of "feel better soon". My intention is to educate you, and if I can do this through my own experience, why not make it that more real?
Before I begin, however, my disclaimer for my my story is that we are all different, and that my experience is just that...mine! What I share here is only one story, one of many, each with their own unique differences. When it comes to our health, it is important to remember there is a lot of information floating around. It is each of our responsibilities to do the research, understand the differences, listen to the experts and do what is right for ourselves. My story should only account for a fraction of the information you will absorb and use to keep yourself healthy and by no means is my story meant to devalue the stories of others who have had experiences better or worse than mine.
Be Ready for the Fight
Wash hands often. Wear your mask. Cover your cough...All great advice. But wait...there's more!!
Even though I took every precaution imaginable, it was no match for this invisible enemy. My dried cracked hands from washing and sanitizer and facemasks laid out for air drying each night are proof I have been vigilant when to comes to prevention, but alas, the virus has invaded my defenses and now lives inside me.
I was fortunate with my symptoms. Two days of fatigue, headache and loss of taste and smell. I never had a fever, congestion was minimal and the symptoms I did experience were mild and quick. I was lucky. I credit a healthy immune system before I was exposed. This amazing body system made up of a host of blood cells is designed to make us well when under attack. Making sure our army of blood cells are armed and ready is our responsibility.
You can boost the strength of your immune system with a few simple steps:
An Ounce of Prevention...
"An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure" -Benjamin Franklin
These words truly resonate more than ever. I choose to not take my health for granted. The decisions I make, to wear a mask, wash my hands, eat my fruits and vegetables are all ones I hope will benefit me in the end. However, nature is stronger and what I do each and every day will hopefully be enough to conquer the invisible enemies and hidden dangers that lie around every corner These are not guarantees nor are they a false sense of security. My actions are simply what I am able to control and do for myself during a time of uncertainty. What actions will you take to prevent the spread of this virus? What actions will you take to prepare for a possible attack on our health and wellbeing?
I do wish and pray for health to you and your loved ones.
Take care of yourself.
Listen to the experts.
Above all...stay well.
Most know to eat right and exercise. This has been a common theme for decades for good health. As long as you are eating your fruits and vegetables, controlling portions, balancing calories in with calories out, we should be all set, right?
Then why is obesity at its highest?
Why do so many struggle with depression or mental illness?
Why are illnesses like diabetes, cancer and Alzheimers on the rise?
The answer- Health is Multidimensional.
The 8 Dimensions
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) identifies 8 Dimensions of Health. Knowing and understanding these 8 Dimensions is key to identifying your starting point towards healthier behavioral change.
The 8 Dimensions are:
Beyond Diet and Exercise
Diet and Exercise encompass only one area of what the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) describes as the 8 Dimensions of Health. Diet and exercise have taken center stage over the years while the emphasis on social, emotional, spiritual, financial, occupational and environmental health has been lacking. However, if all areas are not in balance, our weaker areas will prevent us from reaching overall optimal health and wellness. To help you visualize this, use the 8 Dimensions of Health compass pictured here. Consider your current habits in each of the eight areas and place a dot along the line. A dot closer to the center is considered "unhealthy" while one closer to the outside point is "healthy". When all areas have been assessed, connect the dots. A large smooth circle represents a balanced and healthy lifestyle in all dimensions. A small circle points to an unhealthy lifestyle in all dimensions of health. Most likely you have an image that does not resemble a circle at all. Some dimensions are healthy while others are unhealthy leaving your circle unbalanced.
So what next?
You have just taken an important step towards better health. Identifying areas of weakness can help point you in the direction to better health. You now have a starting point in your journey and you know your destination. Knowing what specific areas of your life to focus on is crucial to beginning your journey to your optimal health destination.
Support Along the Way
Your journey to Health and Wellness does not need to be taken solo. In fact, support from loved ones and friends is imperative to your success. Now that you have discovered your starting point, you may be asking, "What Next?". If you are unsure of your next step, I invite you to reach out to me. As a Wellness Coach, I can help plot your journey and identify the steps that will get you to your destination. Begin by downloading my FREE 8 Dimensions of Health worksheet. Once you have identified your starting point, I can help you one on one develop a plan, support you along the way and be there to celebrate your crossing the finish line!
Are you ready to embark on your path to Health and Wellness?
Thanksgiving looks a lot different this year. Large, chaotic gatherings of family from far and wide have been put on hold. Visiting our most at risk loved ones has become a threat to their safety. Within each of us there is a responsibility to protect our loved ones while still nurturing our social and emotional health.
What can you control?
Nothing can replace the warmth of visiting family, walking into a home with all the smells of the holiday, hugging those you have not seen for a while and indulging in some of the most amazing treats. The current pandemic has made some of this unsafe and challenging to achieve...but it is not impossible. Our brains love to make mountains out of mole hills. I get that COVID is one nasty mole hill, but it helps me to remember, I have no control over this invisible enemy. I do, however, have control over how I respond to the threat of that enemy. I wear my mask, stay home when possible, wash and sanitize often and check my temperature when going places where I will be in contact with others.
This Thanksgiving, my family will not be traveling to Rhode Island as usual. Travel bans and high risk family members make it unsafe. These are circumstances out of my control. But Thanksgiving will go on!!
Zoom and Google Meets have made it possible to see family while you chat. I promise with a little patience and trial and error, anyone can become a master of this technology. Find a time your loved ones can gather and have a family check in, perhaps say grace together before you dig into the sweet potato casserole or enjoy a comforting cup of coffee or tea with your slice of pumpkin pie together.
Celebrate New Traditions
Usually my family travels to Rhode Island and stays the weekend. This year, we have an open chapter to begin creating new traditions. Make a list of all the things you wish you had time to do. Here are some ideas:
What amazing memories will you make?
Allow me to introduce (or re-introduce) myself. I am Liz, founder of TriHealth Wellness Coaching. For over 20 years I have dedicated my life to Health Education. The majority of my time has been spent in a middle school classroom, building skills and educating the future. After a traumatizing loss in October of 2019 and the start of the COVID 19 Pandemic, my "why" was suddenly challenged beyond comprehension. I began questioning my fit in this world and doubting my personal and professional worth. Instead of wallowing, I chose to use my lessons and expertise and began practicing what I preach....Get Comfortable with Being Uncomfortable and Step Outside Your Comfort Zone.
Enter the TriHealth Wellness Overhaul.
I graduated the Institute of Integrative Nutrition in 2016 and have been dipping my toes into entrepreneurship with my Health Coaching business. I teamed up with betaOfitness and began running challenges and educating clients through various weight loss journeys. After life changing experiences, I realized it was time to stop dipping my toes and instead dive in...and it was frightening.
But here I am, welcoming you to the first stage of my journey. I look forward to sharing my knowledge and support to help you step outside your comfort zone and recognize your true strength and potential. I have some great plans and ideas and I am really excited to get started. I would love to hear from you as I take the next step...
What are your health goals?
What are your biggest health concerns and obstacles?
How can a Health Coach like me support you?
What would you like to see included in this blog and through Health Coaching programs?
Thank you for visiting today. Let's get ready to dive into health and wellness together.