by Rosemary Weaver, MPH, RDN, LDN, NCH Registered Dietitian
As Mother’s Day approaches, you’re probably wanting to find a gift that will make mom smile. This year, why not choose something special that is also healthy? Consider choosing your gift from one of these three “wellness gift” categories: Food, Fitness and Relaxation.
Maybe it’s the gift of breakfast in bed or perhaps brunch at the table. A home-cooked meal shows mom you took the time to plan and prepare just for her. To keep it balanced, include a lean protein, whole grains, veggies and fruit and some healthy fat. Serve with mom’s favorite coffee or tea, or ice water with a lemon wedge.
Here are some menu ideas and pairings:
- Asparagus frittata and fresh fruit salad (top fruit with a dollop of Key Lime yogurt)
- Avocado with egg on multigrain toast with a 100% fresh fruit juice spritzer
- High protein pancakes topped with yogurt and raspberries
- Veggie-egg muffins paired with sliced tomato and fresh melon
- Baked oats with berries and low-fat cheesy scrambled eggs
- Salmon/fresh herb/Neufchatel cheese omelet served with fresh baby salad greens/raspberry vinaigrette and rye toast.
- Turkey sausage and veggie breakfast burrito with citrus (orange and grapefruit) sections
Other food gifts that “keep on giving”:
- Start a culinary herb garden for mom to place in a sunny kitchen window. When plants are good-sized, transplant to cute pots that will coordinate with mom’s kitchen. Or, take mom to a garden center to select her favorite herbs and help her plant in patio pots, allowing her to snip fresh herbs for cooking spring through late summer.
- Other edible plants you could buy her to grow in decorative pots on her full-sun patio: tomatoes, lettuce, chard, peas, radishes, mini peppers, blackberries or strawberries.
- Farmer’s Market Jaunt: Gift mom with a fun, recyclable produce bag and an “IOU” for trips with you to your local farmer’s market. Take mom for one or more walks through the market and each time fill her bag with fresh, local produce and perhaps a bouquet of flowers.
- Give her a subscription to a “healthy eating” or cooking magazine.
- Enroll mom in a specialty cooking class, such as “Mediterranean Cooking.”
- If your very busy mom needs help with cooking, consider gifting a meal subscription service for a set period of time. Meal delivery kits (ex., Blue Apron) or prepared meals ready to heat (ex., Freshly) are two different types of meal subscription options that are available.
Gifts that support Mom being active will help her feel good about herself, and improve cardiovascular and bone health.
- Gift mom with a few personal training sessions, Zumba or aqua fitness classes.
- Better yet, join a fitness class with her and she will have a built-in support system for increased accountability.
- “Fitness accessorize” mom with the apparel or equipment that will help support the exercise of her choice. Ideas include: headphones, a fitness watch or step-counter, water bottle or hydro flask, clothing, fitness bands, hand-held weights, pickleball racquet, etc.
Stress affects everyone at times – even “super-hero” moms. Long-term stress may contribute to high blood pressure and heart disease. Help mom de-stress with some of these gift ideas:
- Treat mom to a massage.
- Offer to do a chore or two for her so that she can read or indulge in a much-needed nap.
- Gift mom with a yoga class (and yoga mat to go with it) or enroll her in a Tai Chi class
- Give her a subscription to an app, such as Calm or Headspace, to provide calming sounds, relaxing stories and meditation opportunities.
- Buy mom a weighted blanket to snuggle under as a bed cover or for relaxing during the day.
In summary, whatever mom’s wellness preferences are, consider celebrating her by providing a personal and thoughtful gift that encourages a healthy lifestyle. (A smile from mom is pretty much guaranteed.)