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Oprah’s Favorite Things Returns with 6 Items for a Healthier Lifestyle

In 1996 Oprah greeted her audience with a treasure trove of free gifts and prizes as she debuted the hottest giveaway daytime TV had ever seen. Oprah’s Favorite Things has grown to be the stuff of legends, and people would give arms and legs to have a seat and a chance to take home the media mogul’s top picks for holiday gifts. Oprah’s a giver, a giver of high-quality, high-end, premium gifts and it’s hardly anything you’d find on a clearance rack.

Since the end of her wildly popular daytime talk show, Oprah’s Favorite Things has faded in to TV history. But now through her OWN network, O Magazine, and a new partnership with Huffington Post, Oprah’s breaking the two-year hiatus with the announcement of 48 items on the 2012 Favorite Things list.

Some of it is quite posh and not likely to make it on to the holiday budget of most of her fans (like a nearly $2,000 Jetson-style battery-powered scooter), but some of it is completely in reason. Even better, a few items on her list are even good for you!

Top of the list is the Q37ci elliptical trainer. It’s a pricey addition to a home gym at $3,099, but it certainly pays for itself with dedicated use. She says her trainer Bob Greene turned her on to it and she loves the various options for total body workouts in one machine.
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Healthy Surprise Delivers a Bounty of Vegan Snacks Each Month

Healthy Surprise is a company that ships out gluten-free, vegan, and raw snacks to the door steps of their subscribers. Founder Joe Winke stumbled upon the idea of sending healthy snacks to people after a friend sent him healthy food in the mail for his birthday. Who knew that making an assortment of healthy snacks and putting them in boxes would be a hit?

The snacks range from nuts to granola bars and cookies. You can find them in larger grocery stores or at your local health food store, and certainly online.

Joe and other “snackologists” try all of the snack items before they are placed in the boxes. Since people are particularly fond of kale, Healthy Surprise tries to send kale snacks every month in the boxes, but the rotation of different snack items changes monthly because they want subscribers to receive a healthy surprise each month!
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5 Mother’s Day Gifts that Benefit the Giver and Recipient

If you are fortunate to have a mama, a kind and generous stepmother, or a friend or neighbor you love and adore like a mom, you will most likely want to spoil her with a special treat or favor this Mother’s Day. Thankfully, Valentine’s Day chocolates are no longer gracing the shelves this month, so you can steer clear of tempting your mom with diet sabotaging junk food. To add to the splendor of giving, you can even find something to give that gives back to you in a healthy and satisfying kind of way.

The following are five things you can give, or do, that will not only be well received by your “mom,” they will also healthfully benefit you in return.

Mow the lawn

However dull and boring this Mother’s Day gift idea may sound, a fresh cut yard is food for the soul. Your mom may be spending all of her waking hours planting flowers and preparing the garden, so having help with the lawn will be much appreciated. And to complete the good deed, you will get a refreshing workout in return, and it will leave you both feeling satisfied and happy.

Wash the windows

I know what you are thinking. You think this blogger is telling you to do all of the housework for your mother. Yes and no. Window washing isn’t something that goes unnoticed, and the joys of looking out through clean windows will prevail long after Mother’s Day has past. And yes, your benefit is a workout for your upper body and balance. What could be better than that?
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Graduate to a Healthier Lifestyle: College Graduate Gift Ideas

The April showers are certainly bringing May flowers this year, and they’re also delivering a new class of graduates. Who expect to be showered with gifts.

Do you know what college grads really want? Jobs. Talk about a gift that keeps giving… a salary, health benefits, a desk to sit at for eight hours a day.

If you’ve got a class of 2012 graduation on your calendar in the coming weeks, you’ll want to arrive armed with a gift that says congratulations, welcome to the real world, and I cared enough to not by a cliche Dr. Seuss book. There are gifts that say all of these things. We know because we found them!

There’s something on here for every budget and will certainly help the graduate in your life transition from college to career with a healthy lifestyle as a priority.

View Healthy Graduation Gifts Slideshow



Guiltless Holiday Food Gifts for Everyone on Your List

By Alison Lewis for Ingredients, Inc.

It’s always rewarding to prepare and receive homemade food gifts during the holidays. Well, guess what? Not all of them have to be heavy, high-fat desserts, sugary candy, or gifts that you feel bad about afterwards. I thought I would share a list of some of my favorite homemade food gifts, including quick bread, cookies, granola and more.

If you don’t have time to bake, I’ve also included a great list of healthy food gifts you can purchase online such as chocolate, jam, peanut butter, rubs and fresh fruit. Enjoy these options for a healthier holiday season.

Healthy Homemade Food Gift Ideas

Healthy Pumpkin Bread with Flaxseed from Ingredients, Inc. – Made with Greek yogurt, canned pumpkin and simple baking ingredients, this recipe makes several small loaves just in time for the holidays.

Berry Good For You Cookies from Canola Info – This combination of oats, cherries, coconut, mini chocolate chips and almonds creates a wonderful cookie with only 100 calories and 4.5 grams of fat.

Chunky Nut Granola from Ingredients, Inc. – A very popular granola recipe filled with flaxseed, oats and easy-to-find healthy, all-natural ingredients. Fill a mason jar and top with a decorate ribbon and an ornament for a beautifully presented homemade gift.
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