Give the gift of health with these holiday gift ideas from our editors and nutritionists.
The South Beach Diet
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One of the best
things about the South Beach Diet is that in addition to helping you lose
weight, it teaches you how to lead a sustainable, healthy lifestyle over the
long-term. So, what better way to express your commitment to good health than
by giving holiday gifts that encourage others to eat healthfully and stay
physically fit too? Here are 12 holiday gift ideas that will keep on giving
well into the New Year.
A South Beach Diet-Friendly Gift Basket
Agatston, creator of the South Beach Diet, recommends creating a gift basket
that is a wish for health and happiness in the New Year. He suggests including
a bottle of high-quality extra-virgin olive oil, a box of dark chocolates (the
chocolate should contain at least 70 percent cacao), a bag of coffee beans,
boxes of green, white, and/or oolong tea, and a bottle of good red wine. To
make the basket even more festive, add the colors of the season with some green
and red apples or pears and a pomegranate or two. "Each of these foods is a
good source of health-giving phytonutrients, those nutrients that neutralize
cell-damaging free radicals and that stimulate the body's immune cells and
infection fighting enzymes," says Dr. Agatston.
Citrus Squeezer and Zester
The juice of fresh lemons and limes can be enjoyed
on all Phases of the South Beach Diet in salad dressings, festive drinks and
more. And the zest of these fruits can add a little zing to dressings, sauces,
marinades, chutneys, and desserts. Pair a citrus squeezer, like the OXO Good Grips Citrus Squeezer,
with a Classic
Microplane Zester/Grater to make
squeezing and zesting supereasy for your favorite cook this season.
Herb-Savor Mini Pods
Adding fresh herbs to your recipes is a delicious
way to boost the flavor of favorite dishes. Prepara Herb-Savor Mini Pods are
designed to prolong the life of your fresh herbs for up to three weeks. The
containers are 100% BPA-free and the bases can be easily refilled with water to
help maintain freshness. This set includes three 10-inch-tall pods that will
fit into the door of most refrigerators. The cool design allows you to see the
herbs that are enclosed in the pods, so you'll never forget which ones you have
on hand for upcoming meals.
Olive Oil Mister
We can't recommend
omega-3-rich unsaturated extra-virgin olive oil enough on the South Beach Diet!
Not only is it healthy, a quality extra-virgin olive oil can also make a big
difference when it comes to taste. The Oil
Mister by Prepara supplants any olive oil spray that might be found
at the supermarket, since the BPA-free, sterilizable glass mister can be filled with your favorite extra-virgin
olive oil — plus, the oil can also be infused with fresh herbs and
spices without clogging the mister. The other benefit to the mister is that it
can help you control the amount of oil being used. As delicious and healthy as
it is, olive oil is still a fat, and should be used in moderation. Consider
including a bottle of your favorite EVOO with the mister as part of the gift!
is a highly recommended cooking method on the South Beach Diet because it's
simple, speedy, and an especially healthy way to cook veggies in particular. A
food steamer is a great gift for any health-conscious cook. There are a few
different ways to go with steamer styles. You could choose an old school stackable pot steamer, a digital food steamer, or a cute Marna silicone piggy
A fun gift for fitness newbies (and not so newbies)
is a pedometer, like the Omron GoSmart Pocket
Pedometer HJ-112, which tracks walking intensity, distance, and
calories burned. This pedometer has received high ratings for its ability to
accurately count steps at both slow and fast walking speeds, which makes it an
especially good gift for your South Beach Diet interval walking buddy!
is a part of any good exercise regimen, so if you want to help give the gift of
fitness but don't want to hassle with sizes and styles of exercise apparel,
these cast-iron neoprene-covered hand weights from Valeo might be just
the thing. We know, we know — they're just dumbbells, but this style
of dumbbell is one that people actually get excited about. Reviewers praise the
non-slip grip and how good they feel to hold, plus they come in a variety of colors. (Pssst…Santa, if you're listening, we like the blue ones!) A 3-5-pound
set is a good starter weight.
Membership to a CSA or Food Co-op
Agatston points out that another gift that keeps on giving because it supports
sustainable agriculture is a membership to a community-supported agriculture
(CSA) group or a local food co-op. Not does this help local farmers, it also
gives the recipient the pleasure of getting fresh fruits and vegetables (and
sometimes meats and cheeses, depending on the program) on a weekly basis. Today
there are thousands of CSA farms across the U.S. and co-ops in hundreds of
cities. Check out localharvest.org/csa or coopdirectory.org and make a gift of the
healthiest food possible to a friend or family member.
A Healthy Cookbook
Cookbooks can inspire the home cook in many
ways. For example, delicious, new, healthy recipes can help keep cooks from
getting bored in the kitchen — or at the table. Foreign cuisines and
new cooking techniques can be a satisfying challenge. And some cookbooks walk
the line between a collection of recipes and a story or travelogue, which makes
them engaging both on a cooking and a literary level. Fortunately, healthy
cooking is becoming a big trend, so there are tons of great cookbooks out there
to choose from. But we have to admit that we have a soft spot in our healthy
hearts for the festive South Beach Diet Gluten Solution Cookbook. If you're entertaining guests who are gluten-free or cutting back on gluten, these slimming and delicious recipes make great breakfast, lunch, dinner, appetizers, and side dishes. Know a busy cook? Our The South Beach Diet Super Quick Cookbook is filled with 200 quick and easy recipes that can be cooked in 30 minutes or less!
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