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50 health-inspired unique gift giving ideas

By Sari Huhtala

Do we really need more “stuff” in our lives? Probably not. These wellness-inspired ideas, including DIY simple gifts, and other practical, unique gift-giving ideas, are good for you and the planet too.

  • 1. For those who aspire to eat healthier, or a young couple or single person living on their own, create a healthy meals basket. Include recipes of your favourite wholesome, easy breakfast, lunch or dinner recipes, and some of the ingredients to get them started – like packs of chia, hemp, flax seeds, nut milk, dried healthy pasta, etc. – buy prepackaged, or in bulk and package it yourself in mason jars with home-drawn labels.
  • 2. For the bird lover on your list, make homemade cookie-cutter suets (Google recipe ideas online).
  • 3. Work-from-home essentials – ergonomic tools like a lumbar support cushion for the office chair, or a balance ball chair, a cushioned mouse pad, a keyboard wrist rest, etc.
  • 4. A basket with winter warming hot drink ideas, like a homemade chai recipe and a jar with homemade chai spices, cinnamon sticks, homemade hot chocolate ingredients (raw honey, cocoa and nut/coconut milk) and the recipe, teas, a recipe for golden milk and ingredients to make it (turmeric powder, coconut oil, nut/coconut milk, cinnamon and black pepper).
  • 5. Give a potted plant gift coupon. Dig up or split a perennial from your garden, stick it into a pot of soil, trim back, and set it outside. Coupon redeems the plant in spring time for planting. Medicinal plants like aloe vera and bay leaf make great gifts too!
  • 6. Loose leaf teas with recipes for making your own, and a tea ball.
  • 7. Gather some craft scraps with instructions for a child’s project.
  • 8. Give a coupon for one session of babysitting for a parent or respite for a caregiver.
  • 9. Buy a one-month bus pass for someone who needs it.
  • 10.  Bake something and wrap it in a tea towel with a sprig of holly or pine on top. 
  • 11. Give a coupon for a free lesson from you, like x-country or downhill skiing, tennis, piano, art, etc.
  • 12. Give someone a coupon for an hour/job for whatever skill you possess – plumbing, electrical work or help with renovations.
  • 13. For the gardener, give a collection of seeds for planting in the spring/summer.
  • 14. Bake bread and include the recipe and a cloth bread bag.
  • 15. Use a wicker basket and fill it with your own dried herbs.
  • 16. Create a sleepy time basket, filling it with items like chamomile tea, lavender essential oil, a meditation CD, lavender scented sachets, magnesium topical spray, etc.
  • 17. Buy a hiking trail pass as a gift, or a ski membership.
  • 18. Consumable gifts are appreciated by everyone and don’t usually go to waste (food, wine, preserves, etc.)  Everyone needs to eat and many foods come in recyclable/reuseable packaging, too. Local honey and maple syrup are always a hit, along with fair trade, organic coffee!
  • 19. Put together a “healthy” spa kit with earth-friendly shampoos, soaps, toothpaste, etc.
  • 20. For pet lovers out, check out a “doggie dooley” – a composter for pet waste, that is buried in the yard. You just use a shovel to scoop into it, and it provides an easy, odour-free alternative to doggy bags in the landfill.
  •  21. Christmas tree ornaments made at home (out of pine cones, etc.)
  • 22. Cooking lessons for someone who has always wanted to take them.
  • 23. Purchase a share in a farmer’s crop for next year.
  • 24. For the busy mom, make-ahead meals like soups, casseroles, etc.
  • 25. A go-green laundry gift pack to get someone started, with dryer balls and natural laundry detergent, soap nuts, clothes pins, etc.
  • 26. Homemade granola.
  • 27. A composter.
  • 28. Give a gift certificate for a used book store.
  • 29. Give a gift certificate for a local nursery.
  • 30. A gift certificate for alternative therapies, like reiki, reflexology, etc.
  • 31. Solar-powered gadgets like an LED light or flashlight or mobile phone charger.
  • 32. Waste-free lunch kit.
  • 33. Give a coupon for a foot massage or pedicure for a senior.
  • 34. Beeswax or soy candles that are natural and burn clean.
  • 35. A hydroponic indoor vegetable/herb garden.
  • 36. A sprouter for growing your own microgreens, and seeds to get you started.
  • 37. Seek unique gifts at your local art gallery gift shop. You’ll often find locally or regionally made gift ideas.
  • 38. For someone who enjoys journaling, give them a simple spiral notebook dressed up with paper, fabric and photographs.
  • 39. A meditation CD.
  • 40. EMF products like cell phone chips that provide protection from electromagnetic field-emitting devices.
  • 41. Superfood powders, like Progressive’s VegeGreens or Greens Plus – perfect for anyone who wants to live healthier.
  • 42. For those who suffer from pain, topical magnesium-based balms or topical magnesium spray.
  • 43. Pure, quality essential oils.
  • 44. A weighted blanket.
  • 45. Yoga essentials, like a mat, a block, a strap, music CD
  • 46. Unique rocks and crystals, and a crystal book to identify the rocks – perfect for kids and adults.
  • 47. Jigsaw puzzles – time for a revival of this old-time favourite. Perfect for all ages.
  • 48. A gift certificate for a live blood analysis session – perfect for the person on your list who is sick and tired of feeling sick and tired, and has decided they are ready to make changes in their life. Live blood analysis is a great starting point.
  • 49. A healthy snack basket, including items like dried fruits, nuts, dark chocolate, and even a selection of healthier treats like vegan cheese puffs, organic nacho chips, kale chips, etc.
  • 50. Sew a tea/coffee cozy using scraps of material. (Looks like an old-fashioned quilt).

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