With less than a month to go until Christmas if you need a gift for a fasting friend or haven’t written your own Christmas list yet, I hope the ideas below are helpful. From health & fitness gadgets to kitchen helpers and stocking fillers, there’s something to suit most budgets here. If you’ve got more ideas, we’d love to read about them in the comments!
#1 Heated USB Computer Mouse
If you’ve fasted, you’ve probably noticed that you feel the cold a bit more on your fast days. I notice it especially in my hands and working a desk job I found my fingers were always freezing on a fast day. I no longer need to look like an oddball wearing gloves while I type, as my husband bought me one of these fantastic heated mice last Christmas. With two heat settings (as well as being able to turn it off for the warmer months) I love this mouse and I’m sure many other fasters would agree! You can also get heated mouse mats, some of which are pretty cute (but maybe not so suitable for a workplace!).
#2 Spiral Vegetable Slicer
If you do a bit of low carbing on your fast days, you may have already tried ‘courgetti’, making spaghetti style noodles from courgette (zucchini) – or other vegetable ‘noodles’. This kitchen gadget makes the job of turning your vegetables into low calorie, low carb noodles fun, quick and easy.
#3 Oil Sprayer
Many fasters rely on low calorie oil spray products to keep their calories down on a fast day – but did you know many of these sprays contain added chemicals and are not pure oil? I’m a firm believer in minimising on additives where possible and was delighted to receive a pump action oil sprayer last Christmas. You can fill these with whichever kind of oil you prefer – no added chemicals and much kinder to the environment as you won’t be having to throw away empty spray cans all the time.
#4 Hot Drinks Maker
Whether you prefer tea or coffee on your fast days you can enjoy a range of quick and fuss free, calorie counted beverages using these pod and capsule based hot drinks makers. I’ve even seen some low calorie hot chocolate pods available. Maybe Santa will bring me one this year!
#5 Smart Kitchen Scales
If you’re tired of having to count calories the old fashioned way, why not put a set of smart kitchen scales on your wish list? These modern miracles connect wirelessly to an app on your smart phone or tablet, allowing you to find out not only the calorie count for your meal as you weigh out the ingredients but also the full nutritional information. These are at the top of my list for this year, in the form of the SITU Scales due out soon in the UK. Escali offer a similar product in the USA.
#6 Smart Body Analyser Scales
Another way to simplify weigh ins and tracking your weight loss, Smart Body Analyser Scales transmit your weigh in data directly to an app on your phone or tablet to keep track of your progress and chart it for you. Some of these scales are pretty clever, measuring not only your weight, body fat and water content but also able to check your heart rate, air quality, temperature and forecast the weather for the day, such as the Withings WS50 smart scales, which I can highly recommend as a satisfied user!
#7 Activity Trackers
Many fasters find themselves wanting to increase their fitness level as they lose weight and what better way to track your activity levels and improvement than with a fitness tracking device such as the Fitbit or Withings Pulse O2. I must have been a really good girl last year as I found one of these under my Christmas tree as well! I wear it on a daily basis to track my movement, heart rate (this may have saved my life, but that’s another story!) and calories burned, I also wear it all night to monitor my sleeping patterns. A great gift for anyone who wants to get a better picture of their health overall, especially in combination with some smart bathroom scales.
#8 Fasting Reference & Recipe Books
If you’re buying for a relatively new faster, a fasting book would make a great and inexpensive gift – whether it’s the original The Fast Diet book by Dr Michael Mosley and Mimi Spencer, or one of the many other 5:2 diet books these make a great starting point for new fasters. There are loads of great recipe books out there too and as most cooks will tell you, you can never have too many of these!
#9 Clothes Shop Vouchers
Most of us long term fasters will know why this is – once we get fed up of our trousers falling down and jumpers engulfing us, it’s time to invest in some new additions to the wardrobe. If you don’t know what to get your fasting friend, I’m sure vouchers for their favourite clothes shop would be gratefully received.
…and don’t forget those Christmas stocking fillers!
#10 Low Calorie Hot Chocolate
Many of us swear by these as a treat on a fast day (especially to help us get to sleep!), so a pot (or some sachets) of this make for a good stocking filler for a faster. Highlights and Options are the usual brands we see mentioned at the forum and on Facebook, but Galaxy also have a low calorie offering and I must say I’ve recently been enjoying the Sainsburys own brand alternative, which has fewer calories (36) and makes a really nice thick drink with a less sweetened flavour. If you’re a bit creative you might even like to try making this recipe for a low calorie hot chocolate (let us know how you get on, I’ve yet to try it!) and wrapping it up festively.
#11 Pocket Hand-warmers
For those fasters who don’t work at a desk (so can’t use a heated mouse) but get chilly on their fast days, pocket hand-warmers are an ideal sized gift for in a Christmas stocking as well as being practical.
#12 Pocket Book of Calories
Handbag-sized and really helpful, these mini calorie guides have been really helpful to me and my friends when cutting down on the calories and are also a nice sized gift for in a stocking.
#13 Tape Measure
When I was little, stocking fillers were not expensive gifts. They were little things, for fun or for practicality – or often just little edible treats. Stocking fillers needn’t be expensive and this idea is certainly not going to break the bank. A simple tailors tape measure is useful for keeping track of our measurements as we lose weight and is dirt cheap. That’s the best kind of stocking filler if you ask me! Of course you could push the boat out and buy a pretty retractable one (every woman should keep one in her handbag!), which does make for a nicer gift but isn’t quite so inexpensive.
#14 Simple Pedometer
If your budget doesn’t stretch to a fancy activity tracker, or you simply don’t need all those extra bells and whistles, a simple pedometer is a nice way to measure your activity levels and encourage you to increase them. My first one came free with a box of cereal, but really motivated me to move around more each day. These needn’t be at all expensive and make an ideal stocking filler for a faster who also wants to improve their overall health and fitness.
#15 Stock Cubes
Yes, you read that right, I said stock cubes – as a stocking filler! As mentioned previously, I like my stocking fillers to fall into one of these categories – fun, practical or edible. These fall into all three categories – any faster is bound to chuckle when they unwrap a pack of these! Loads of us enjoy a stock cube drink on a fast day to help stave off the headaches and as a sort of low calorie soup. So, they’re fun, they’re edible and a practical gift – on top of that, a box of these is stocking sized, inexpensive and available from your local grocery store. Brilliant!
What’s on your Christmas list this year? We’d love to hear your suggestions!