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Your healthy gift guide

21 November 2012
An aromatherapy kit is a fun and therapeutic healthy gift
An aromatherapy kit is a fun and therapeutic healthy gift

Aromatherapy kit

An aromatherapy kit is a fun and therapeutic gift that could spark a life-long interest. The term aromatherapy refers to the use of oils extracted from plants.  There are around 150 essential oils and each is thought to alleviate or instigate a particular health benefit. For example, peppermint and rosemary have been found to help relieve certain types of headaches, whilst lavender is used to calm. A good starter kit will contain many of the following essential oils: basil, bergamot, cedarwood, eucalyptus, lemongrass, chamomile, tea tree, lavender, orange (sweet) and ylang ylang. Most starter kits also come with a wooden box, which means less gift wrapping!

Cost: £20.00 - £40.00

Homemade brew

Although studies have found there to be some health benefits associated with drinking alcohol, on the whole it is a rather unhealthy, calorific indulgence. However, Christmas is traditionally a time for excess and immoderation. Therefore a healthy gift for those who still want to indulge during the festive season is a home-brewing kit. There are several health benefits to drinking homemade beer. Firstly, you can avoid preservatives, chemicals and additives. You can also add healthy ingredients, such as garlic. Alternatively, if you prefer wine, buy a wine brewing kit. Many wines contain histamines and additives that can cause hay fever symptoms. With a home brewing kit you can avoid these unwanted extras.

Cost: £20.00 - £65.00

Natural beauty

A natural hair care gift is a great present and one that will be remembered every time that person receives a fabulous compliment or a charming smile. If you would like a product that encourages hair growth, choose a hair care product that contains lavender oil, lemongrass or rosemary. If you would prefer a product that moisturises the hair, look for one that is rich in shea butter or jojoba oil. If you would like an item that cleanses gently opt for a shampoo or conditioner that has wheat protein or the vitamins A, C and E in. Always avoid those that contain sodium lauryl sulfate and sodium laureth sulfate as these are harmful.

Cost: £4.00 - £8.00

Flowering tea set

As a present, a tea set is a rather uninspired and dated gift. Yet a flowering tea set is a colorful, creative and exotic art form that also has numerous health benefits. Flowering tea, otherwise known as blossoming tea, originates from China. Here silver needle tea buds and fresh flowers are sewn together. The tea is then placed in a transparent tea pot, and as the hot water is added the tea unfurls and blossoms into a stunning floral display. The tea not only looks good, it also tastes refreshing and fruity, depending on the flavours you choose. The flowers and tea used all have their own benefits and all detoxify and rejuvenate.

Cost: £2.00 (for individual tea) Cost: £35.00-£75.00 (for a tea set)

Homemade recipe book

If you are looking for a smaller gift then a homemade recipe book is a perfect and thoughtful keepsake that is also very practical. Choose recipes that are low in salt, low in saturated fat and ones that use ingredients that will be in that person’s cupboard. Also check that the person you are giving this gift to does not have any allergies. You can print off some recipes from the internet, or use recipes you already know or own. Adding pictures and little snippets about why you have included this recipe also adds to the charm of this little gift. To make it that extra bit special, why not get the item bound or buy a pre-bound pad to store the recipes in?

Cost: £1.00 - £10.00

Massage

Know someone who has had a stressful year? Then treat them to a massage. There are lots of different types of massage. For those who need to relax treat them to a deep tissue massage, which will release the chronic patterns of tension, or a Swedish massage, which relaxes muscles. A sport massage is ideal for those who are active. They drain away fatigue, relieve swelling, prevent injury and reduce muscle tension. Prices and quality vary greatly, so try to use a masseur that has been recommended. If you are buying for a loved one but are looking for a gift on a budget you could always buy a bottle of massage oil and offer your own services.

 Cost: £3.00- £65.00

Creative cookery

You may not receive the Most Romantic Person of the Year award by giving a cookery based gift, but kitchen appliances are often well-used, good-value items that can be fun to use throughout the year. If you are worried that the person may find a piece of cooking equipment dull, then choose a fun appliance like an ice-cream maker. Not only can you get creative with this item, you can slash the amount of fat and additives, or make the healthier sorbet option. Another great gift for those who are perhaps more culinary minded is a steamer. When you cook using a steamer the food never comes into contact with the water, so nutrients are not lost when cooking.

Cost: £25.00 - £60.00 (ice cream maker) £20.00 - £70.00

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