Over the years, I’ve learned that the foundation of good health is proper digestion and mindfulness (being in the present, in a calm state of mind). Not gimmicky supplements and trendy superfoods. With that in mind, if you still have some stocking stuffers or gifts to choose, or plan to give yourself the foundation of good health this coming year, below are a few of my favorite essentials.
Diaspora Co. Spices: Partnering directly with their hand-picked farmers in India, this company is committed to especially high quality and fair prices. The cost to you is worth it, and you’ll taste the quality in your cooking. My favorites are the high curcumin Lakadong turmeric, rose petals, coriander (incredible aroma and flavor), ginger, and fennel seeds. Cooking with spices is one of the keys to unlocking proper digestion – plus flavorful meals!
Burlap & Barrel Hing: An essential cooking spice for those having trouble digesting beans, legumes, garlic, onions, and many other foods. Just a sprinkle goes a long way! Pick up their vanilla extract kit while you’re there!
Farm True Ghee : The only ghee I use and recommend. Using milk from 100% grass-fed and humane-treated cows (they are only collecting milk during the time of year when cows are on grass), Farm True also partners with its Amish farmers in Pennsylvania who are committed to their high standards of care and milk production. I feel comfortable using and recommending this ghee to all those who are sensitive to dairy protein, as the protein has been removed from the milk fat. Ghee is also rich in butyrate, which is an incredibly helpful compound for maintaining and getting back to balanced gut health.
CCF Tea : Cumin, Coriander, and Fennel Seed tea. This is an essential go-to for good digestion and can be quite helpful to sip on this time of year. Available through my custom dispensary at Wellevate, along with a few other wellness mainstays.
Mountain Rose Herbal Tea : Lots of selection of herbal blends for your needs. They are all high quality!
Oregon Hazelnuts: The Willamette Valley in Oregon is home to 99% of the US Hazelnut production. I toured and participated in a farm dinner at My Brothers’ Farm this last fall – local hazelnuts are highly recommended! Use them in homemade snack bars, as a topping to soups, salads, and grain bowls, or use a food processor and turn them into rich, delicious hazelnut butter.
Dried Tart Cherries: Tart cherries might have a little of an endurance athlete health halo around them (which is perhaps not justified in the amount any person would / could regularly consume), but they are sweet pops of flavor that add so much to all sorts of foods (drop cookies, Wonder Woman snack bars, salads, elevated grain dishes), and just one or two with a square of dark chocolate also makes for a delicious and satisfying dessert.
Honey Stinger Caffeinated Energy Gels: Sting or Bee Stung, as the Honey Stinger Hive says. These are my go-to race day fuel.
Nutrition Consultation Gift Card: Give the ultimate gift of good digestion, good health and properly fueled performance – working with a qualified nutrition professional. (Reach out to me to inquire and we’ll get a gift card in the amount you choose sorted.)
A Good Dutch Oven – A good cast iron dutch oven in the size that works for you will be an investment for a lifetime. My 2-quart dutch oven is the go-to pot for cooking stovetop grains like quinoa and rice. They come out perfect every time.
Root, Stem, Leaf, Flower: My go-to cookbook this year! Gill Meller has a talent for turning minimal ingredient lists into delicious elevated meals that highlight seasonal vegetables and fruit. The photos and writing are worth the book alone! Check out some of my other favorite cookbooks and nutrition / food / herbal books for more ideas.
Rifle Journal Spiral Notebook: A spiral journal for writing notes and thoughts.
Tongue Scraper: Won’t go a day without it! A tongue scraper, used first thing every morning, removes all the bacteria and film from your tongue that makes its way up from your digestive tract at night. This is a must for healthy digestion!
Beeswax Candle: A good candle is so helpful for getting into a calm, present state of mind. And beeswax burns clean, so you’re not releasing toxic compounds into your air.
Want to Know More?
Within my nutrition practice, I specialize in endurance athletes and digestive imbalances, from an Ayurvedic and Functional Nutrition foundation. I encourage you to reach out to me for more personalized support or sign up for my monthly newsletter.