Ok, so whether you’re a Christmas super-fan and have already decked the boughs with holly, or whether the mere mention of the ‘C-word’ has you cowering away in a corner, the fact is that there are just over four weeks to Christmas. I don’t know about you, but I find the secret to a stress-free Christmas is to be organised - and what better way to start than by thinking about what you’d like Santa to bring you? Avoid the stress of unwrapping unwanted items (talcum powder! scented clothes hangers!) by letting your nearest and dearest know well in advance what you’d like to be waking up to on Christmas morning.
As you might already know, many of the chemicals in the products we come across on a daily basis are very disruptive to our hormones. This is because synthetic chemicals often behave in a similar way to our body’s own hormones. And it doesn’t end there, the majority of these chemicals exert a much stronger effect than our body’s own hormones….you can see where I’m going with this can’t you? So, why not use this Christmas as a chance to start (or build up) your collection of hormone-loving products?
Here are my top five hormone-loving gifts to help you get started on that letter to Santa:
1. Glass bottles and tupperware
These might not sound very sexy but they are ridiculously important for hormonal health. Plastic is a massive hormone disrupter and hormone-disrupting chemicals leach easily into our food and water. Many people will tell you that as long as the plastic is BPA-free it’s fine to use. Don’t believe them. Plastic is always bad for our hormones. End of. Nowadays there are lots of nice products out there, like for example glass food storage containers by Lifefactory or beautiful water bottles by bkr.
2. A decent high speed blender
2016 was definitely the year of the NutriBullet but if you managed to resist the trend and don’t have one yet I really recommend you bite the bullet (excuse the pun!) and get hold of a decent blender for 2016. Why? So you can increase your vegetable intake! Smoothies and soups are probably the two easiest ways to increase your vegetable intake without even noticing you’re doing it. Imagine starting your day with a smoothie packed with spinach, kale, celery, avocado and lime, you’re already up to four portions of veg and you haven’t even left the house - boom! Veggies play a key role in maintaining hormonal health as they are amazing at supporting liver function and detoxification. In fact, it is the one thing that always has the biggest impact on my client’s hormonal symptoms, so let’s get blending!
3. Organic body care gift sets
Christmas wouldn’t be quite the same without a gift set, so how about asking for an organic version this year and reducing the amount of toxic chemicals you put on your skin? A recent study estimated that women put 138 chemicals on their bodies every day (it’s 85 for men in case you were wondering). An organic gift set is the perfect opportunity to experiment with cleaner products and to make those first all important steps to cleaning up your cosmetics cupboard. My favourite gift sets this year include boxes by Ren, Neal’s Yard and Weleda, I mean, how can you not love a set that calls itself ‘Uplifting?’
4. A yoga bolster
This one is one of my personal favourites, you don’t even have to know the first thing about yoga for this to bring you endless hours of contented calm! For me, a yoga bolster is a gentle reminder to take time out for myself. It can be used to encourage great posture when meditating or it can be used to open up the back and release tense muscles after a long day sat at your desk. Even just folding forward and hugging it for ten minutes can cause the most wonderful sensation of relaxation and wellbeing. For inventive ways to use your bolster just type in 'how to use a yoga bolster' into YouTube and you will be truly amazed! All hormones are interconnected and so reducing your stress hormone production will have a massive effect on all our other hormones. Enough said!
5. A HEPA air purifier
Again, although not the sexiest sounding of gifts (I never said this list would be sexy!) a HEPA air purifier will work wonders at reducing your toxic load. Did you know, indoor air can be up to one hundred times more toxic than outdoor air? Eek! The ‘HEPA’ stands for ‘high-efficiency particulate air’ which basically means the filter traps all kinds of particles including dust, dirt and toxins. Ideally, your whole house should be kitted out with HEPA filters but if this isn’t an option just now start with your bedroom and slowly work your way around the other rooms. Reputable HEPA manufacturers include IQAir, Austin Air and Blueair, with the most affordable of these brands being Blueair. Feel free to get in touch should you have any questions about how to choose the air purifier that’s right for you as it can be quite tricky.
So there you have it folks- my top five hormone-balancing Christmas gift ideas, I would love to hear whether any of them make it to your Christmas list and if so which ones!