Last week, we shared four delicious and energising ideas to gift yourself or your loved ones this festive season. This week, we’ve got four more! If you’re after something sweet or soothing, look no further…
These Raw Christmas pudding balls and Raw white Christmas balls are guaranteed to get everyone into the festive spirit. The best part is they use wholefood ingredients, so no overly processed nasties. They’re the perfect healthy snack to gift across the festive season, when ‘sometimes foods’ are often on high rotation, says Jean Hailes naturopath Sandra Villella.
If you or your special someone has a ‘sweet tooth’, locally produced honey could be a hit. “It’s a natural sweetener but lower GI than table sugar,” says Sandra. (The GI or ‘glycaemic index’ is a measure of how carbohydrates affect blood glucose levels. Lower GI foods raise blood glucose levels more steadily than higher GI ones.) Go for raw, unheated honey as heat reduces its antibacterial qualities, advises Sandra. Just remember, honey is still a source of sugars, so enjoy in moderation. It also isn’t suitable for infants under one year.
When soothing the mind and body is the goal, herbal tea is a winner. According to Sandra, chamomile, peppermint, lemon balm, ginger and fennel make good digestive teas, meaning they have a calming effect on the gut when consumed after a meal. Chamomile, lavender and lemon balm are also good for mentally relaxing before or after a busy day, she adds. Source good quality loose-leaf herbs or tea bags with visible leaves and a noticeable smell. For a homemade gift, try our Sleep tea.
This is “one of the oldest therapies for improved wellbeing”, says Jean Hailes psychologist Gillian Needleman. Massage helps ease muscular tension and increase oxytocin, the hormone connected to human bonding, stress release and relaxation, she explains. “You could gift a massage voucher or offer to do it yourself.”