It’s time to make your list and check it twice! The holiday season is here and if you’re looking for gift ideas for family and friends, why not consider something that could be beneficial to their health and well-being? Whether it’s the friend who enjoys time in the kitchen, the fitness buff who never misses a workout, a relative looking to focus more on his or her health in the new year or someone who simply appreciates a gift that is practical and useful, here are some ideas that should cover everyone on your list.
For the Kitchen
Kitchen gifts are popular – after all, everyone has to eat and many people also enjoy cooking. Several kitchen gift ideas can help facilitate healthier eating:
- Cookware: One of the best ways to eat healthier is to eat out less. A new set of pots and pans might be just the inspiration needed for more home-cooked meals. Look for nonstick cookware that allows you to cook without using as much oil and butter.
- Cookbooks: Plenty of cookbooks focus on healthy eating, and any cook is always glad to have some new recipe ideas.
- Blenders: There are a lot of high-quality, reasonably priced blenders on the market. For someone who wants to start their day with a healthy smoothie or shake, consider a small blender/smoothie-maker that yields an individual-size smoothie.
- Kitchen scales: For an inexpensive and handy gift, consider a kitchen scale. Not only is a scale helpful to the cook trying to figure out how much of an ingredient to put in a recipe, but it’s also beneficial for those interested in cutting back how much food they are preparing and eating. If someone is trying to get their meat portions down to the recommended four ounces per serving, a kitchen scale is a foolproof way of getting there.
- Vegetable steamers: A steamer is another inexpensive, practical gift. Steaming vegetables is one of the healthiest ways to prepare them. Vegetables retain more of their vitamins and nutrients when steamed rather than boiled. Steaming also avoids the unhealthy fats associated with frying.
- Air Fryers: Air fryers have become very popular in the last several years, and for good reason: they produce crispy food without the fattening, unhealthy oils traditionally used for fried food. In fact, air fryers don’t really fry food at all. They circulate heat around the food, similar to a convection oven. This helps to crisp the food without frying it.
Exercise & Fitness
If you have someone on your list who is a fitness fanatic or a person simply trying to get more active, there are a number of useful gift ideas they’ll appreciate.
- Shoes and clothes: A good pair of shoes and comfortable clothing are essential items for exercise. Running and walking shoes, warmup suits and sweatpants all make for good gifts. If you’re not sure exactly what size or style, a gift card works, as well!
- Fitness trackers and smart watches: A smartwatch or fitness tracker can provide you all kinds of useful information as you exercise and go about your day: they can keep track of the steps you’ve walked, how fast you have run, how many flights of stairs you climbed, your heart rate and how much sleep you’re getting.
If you’re thinking of buying a fitness tracker for someone on your shopping list, consider what they will use it for. If it’s someone who has a moderate exercise routine, a device that tracks steps will probably be sufficient.
But some trackers and smart watches will do much more. If you are shopping for an avid runner, swimmer or triathlete, consider a training tracker that does it all. Many include a GPS function, enabling the user to easily track the route and distance walked, run or biked.
Some trackers contain a gyroscope that can tell if you’re sitting or standing – with periodic reminders to stand or move about. They can also determine if you are running, swimming or on a bike.
Others will also monitor your heart rate, so you can track it throughout the day and know if you’re hitting your target heart rate during workouts. Even others can track your perspiration and breathing.
Most of these devices will sync to your smartphone so you can monitor your progress and track changes.
- Resistance bands: for people looking to do more strength training, resistance bands are a great way to go. They are lightweight and people are much less likely to hurt themselves with them than with a dumbbell or barbell. They are also much easier to store than weights. You can even throw them in a suitcase and take them with you when traveling.
- Headphones, music & books: For those who like to listen to something while they exercise, consider upgrading their headphones or earbuds. And if they need some new material to listen to while running or hitting the weights, you could always buy them a subscription to a digital music service or some audio books.
- Memberships, classes & passes: It’s not necessary to join a gym or take classes to get physically active – you can do that just by going for a brisk walk. But for people who want to take their fitness routine to a more advanced level or need an additional incentive to get up and get moving, a gym membership or class may be the perfect gift.
Finding a new activity does not have to involve a pricey membership, however. Here in North Texas, there are plenty of options to consider. Community colleges, including Tarrant County College and the Dallas County Community College District, offer inexpensive, non-credit fitness classes, available to any resident of the county. These include cycling, kickboxing, yoga, swimming and a variety of sports. If you have someone on your list who is interested in a new challenge, one of these classes may be the perfect gift for them or for both of you to take together.
And for someone who enjoys spending time in the great outdoors, consider a Texas State Parks Pass, available for $70 from the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. This pass grants entry for one year to the pass holder and anyone else in their vehicle to any one of Texas’ 89 state parks, including several North Texas locations. The Parks Pass provides limitless opportunities for hiking and other outdoor activity.
Useful Household Gadgets
Finally, if someone on your list appreciates a practical and useful gift, even if it isn’t necessarily “fun,” think about one of these gadgets that can help improve health and quality of life.
- Dehumidifiers: A dehumidifier helps remove moisture from the air indoors, which can in turn prevent allergy triggers like mold, mildew and dust mites from forming.
- Humidifiers: Sometimes our homes get too dry, especially in the winter when the heat is running a lot. An overly dry environment can lead to dry, flaky and itchy skin. A humidifier solves that problem by putting some moisture back in the air.
- Air purifiers: An air purifier helps remove dust, pollen and other airborne pollutants from the air in your home. This is another useful product for anyone who suffers from allergies.
Give Back to Our Community
For the last 14 years, Privia Medical Group North Texas (PMGNTX) physicians and employees have teamed up with The Greatest Gift Catalog Ever to raise money for North Texas non-profit organizations. The Greatest Gift Catalog Ever features gifts that the shopper can buy for those in need – charitable contributions to some of our area’s leading non-profit organizations. Each non-profit features specific dollar amounts that will purchase specific goods and services to further their mission.
As in past years, The Greatest Gift Catalog Ever can be found in PMGNTX physician offices in November and December. The 2021 catalog features the following North Texas charities:
- A Wish with Wings
- Academy 4 Every 4th Grader
- Airpower Foundation
- Alzheimer’s Association
- Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tarrant County
- Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Fort Worth
- Camp John Marc
- Catholic Charities Fort Worth
- Community Healthcare of Texas
- Don’t Forget to Feed Me Pet Food Bank
- Gill Children’s Services
- Helping Restore Ability
- Hope Center for Autism
- Kids Who Care Inc.
- LinkEd (formerly The Learning Center of North Texas)
- Meals on Wheels of Tarrant County
- Recovery Resource Council
- Ronald McDonald House Fort Worth
- The First Tee Fort Worth
- The Parenting Center
- The Welman Project
- Union Gospel Mission of Tarrant County
By making a charitable contribution through The Greatest Gift Catalog Ever, you’ll provide a meaningful gift for those in need in our community – and to those volunteers who are on the front lines, doing good work to care for those less fortunate.