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Healthy Holiday Gifts

This year, think outside the candy box.

Gail Newbold Dec 15, 2017

Sweets and the holidays go hand in hand, and nothing should separate the two. But once the revelry has ended and post-holiday penance begins, your friends and family will welcome the healthy gift you so thoughtfully selected.

The options are dizzying, ranging from a package of healthy nuts or crunchy granola to a fancy exercise bike, a 10-punch yoga pass or a Nike FuelBand, depending on your budget.

And in your search for the perfect healthy treat, why not support your local economy by checking out the products and services offered by people and companies in your own backyard? Have fun trolling for gifts from Utah’s Own and Idaho’s offerings at Tastes of Idaho and Idaho Preferred.

Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Healthy Edible Gifts

  • Try Insane Dalane’s raspberry vinaigrette and honey mustard homemade salad dressings and chewy moist granola, 801-693-9135.
  • Allred Orchards in Provo and Rowley’s Red Barn in Santaquin are just two of the many Utah and Idaho farms, dairies and orchards that offer products year-round such as jams, juices, apples and gift boxes.
  • Kodiak Cakes Frontier Flapjack and Waffle mix and a variety of other whole wheat and healthy products can be purchased online or in stores.
  • Members of the Miller family have been commercial packers of fine raw honey since 1894, along with a host of other local companies and backyard beekeepers. Cox’s creamed honey from Shelley, Idaho, is delectable.
  • A loaf of hearty artisan bread is always a welcome and affordable gift, particularly from Utah bakers like Crumb Brothers in Logan and Volkers Bakery in Kamas, to name just a few.
  • Who wouldn’t love to slice into a brick of apple walnut smoked cheese from Utah’s Beehive Cheese Co., available at most Harmons and Dan’s supermarkets, as well as online; or truffle cheese from Ballard Family Dairy & Cheese.
  • Not all products sold by the venerable Lehi Roller Mills, in business since 1906, are healthy, but some are, like its heart-healthy line of muffin and hotcake mixes.
  • Western Nut, another historic Utah company, buys high-quality raw nuts and roasts them to perfection. City Peanut Shop in downtown Boise, Idaho, will charm gift recipients with its lemon pecans, garlic pistachios and more.
  • Diabetic family members in particular may enjoy a gift of home-dried beef jerky in flavors like Cajun, mesquite and teriyaki. Local butchers such as Don’s Meats and Snider Bros. Meats, both in Utah, make their own jerky.
  • Gift cards to healthy restaurants offering vegan or raw food or to juice bars and salad spots are fun to give. Local popcorn companies have popped up offering snack food not laden with sugar. Salt Lake City’s Pop Art Gourmet Popcorn dishes out flavors like Thai Coconut Curry and Rosemary Truffle.

Healthy Tools and Toys

Food is always a welcome gift, but it isn’t the only game in town, especially for those with bigger budgets. Consider these ideas:

  • Gift certificate for a healing massage.
  • Healthy cooking classes at places like Utah’s Orson Gygi and Thanksgiving Point.
  • Gym membership.
  • A 10-punch pass to yoga or tai chi classes.
  • Exercise gear like a Nike FuelBand, Fitbit, exercise bike or treadmill.
  • Disaster and emergency preparedness food and supplies for “the big one,” sold by many local Utah companies such as Emergency Essentials, Live Prepared or Augason Farms.
  • Health or fitness magazines like Cooking Light.
  • Meditation course or phone app such as Headspace.

This article was originally published in the November/December 2014 issue of Community magazine

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