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The 12 gifts of wellness – Part 1

Medical & health articles
Food rainbow1

A three-part series for the festive season.

Treat yourself or a special someone with the gift of wellness this festive season. In this three-part series, we’ve brought together expert-approved ideas that are good for the mind and body. Let’s kick off with Part 1 of our gift guide, meaning healthy fats, fresh herbs, moreish nuts and a dash of movement. Cheers!

Olive oil1

Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)

A classy gift, packed with goodness! According to Jean Hailes naturopath Sandra Villella, EVOO is high in healthy (monounsaturated) fats. It’s also one of the most beneficial anti-inflammatory foods in the Mediterranean diet. Plus, it offers valuable antioxidants. “Antioxidants help fight potential cell damage,” says Sandra.

Go for Australian-produced EVOOs that are dark green, not pale and watery, and enjoy up to four tablespoons daily in salads and cooking, she adds.

Potted herbs

The options are endless when it comes to herbs. If you’re looking for ones that are gentle on the stomach, Sandra recommends aromatic, or pleasant-smelling herbs, such as dill, basil, mint, lemon balm and rosemary. They “have a calming action on digestion”, she says.

Add a nice touch by gifting your herbs with a herb-rich recipe, such as Sandra’s Dill pesto or Eggplant and Mediterranean salad.



Good things come in small packages and nuts are no exception. According to Sandra, nuts are a source of protein, healthy fats, vitamins and minerals, they’re heart-friendly when enjoyed in moderation, plus they “help us to stay full longer”. An ideal serve of nuts, she says, is 30-50 grams per day.

On their own, they’re delicious, but to take things up a notch, try making these Homemade spiced nuts.


Keeping active benefits your heart, bones, joints, weight, mental health and independence as you age making it a “wonderful gift”, according to Professor Flavia Cicuttini, head of Monash University’s musculoskeletal unit.

Her tip for the perfect movement-related gift is to “think about something the person is likely to continue to use”. Think new walking shoes, a movement tracker or a voucher for exercise classes with friends.

Native flowers and gift1

Want more inspiration?

We've unveiled Part 2 of The 12 gifts of wellness with the perfect gift to de-stress and more edible gift ideas. Explore Part 2 here.