'Tis the season of gift-giving and with it the question of what to buy that special someone. While the holidays are a season of splurging, health-focused gifts can be a fun, useful, and affordable option. So how do you pick a healthy gift for someone that won't end up collecting dust in their basement? For that special person in your life, we recommend considering:
Sudoku, jigsaw puzzles, disentanglement puzzles, crosswords, mazes, Rubik's cubes, stacker puzzles, tangrams, there are extensive types of puzzles to choose from! With a huge variety available, you can find a style, skill level, and age range appropriate for anyone.
Some health benefits of puzzles include a mental workout, practice in hand-eye coordination (especially for young children!), and an outlet for stress.
Similarly, board games often encourage strategy and mental exercise. Many modern activities, like spending time on the internet, limit face-to-face interaction, but humans are naturally social creatures. Socializing and engaging with other people is important for emotional health. Gift someone with a game, and you can encourage them to spend much-needed quality time with others!
They may seem overly simple or just for kids, but sometimes simple equals versatile.
Outdoor toys like soccer balls and baseballs encourage activity and physical hobbies, a key part of any healthy lifestyle. Balls are good for hand-eye coordination, fitness, and the development of young children.
Playing outdoors is good for everyone, but it's not the only gift possibility—For adult friends and family, consider a massage ball for relaxing at home. Small, easily stored, and good for applying pressure to feet, shoulders, or other sore muscles, they're a good gift for those with stressful jobs. Another option is an exercise ball chair, which helps improve balance and core strength without interrupting the user's normal routine. Older adults might also benefit from hand exercise balls, which are a firmer version of stress balls.
Reusable water bottles
Hydration is something many Americans neglect. Why not give a gift that can help build healthy hydration habits?
Consumption of excess salty snacks, sugary foods, sodas, and coffee leads to dehydration, a health concern that's not often talked about. Chronic dehydration is bad for internal organs, especially the kidneys. By giving your friends and family a bottle the right size to keep on their desks, you can help remind them to drink more water.
Find a bottle with fill lines to encourage water consumption throughout the day, or perhaps one printed with favorite characters for kids to take to school.
One of the best ways to encourage health is to spend time together on a healthy activity. Instead of bulky exercise equipment or items that might not get used, offer your friends and family experiences.
The fun of an afternoon kayaking, weekly walks together, or a 2-person pool membership can get both you and your loved one moving. Enjoy spending time together and getting exercise at the same time! Your health and relationship will thank you.