Be Well: Product Picks for a Healthy Holiday

From chakra candles to weighted blankets for kids, a mini gift guide with products as unique as the important people in your life—curated by the very experts creating the future for wellness.

By Mpls.St.Paul.Magazine 

The weather outside is frightful—and the Covid outside is far from delightful. As the favorite people in our lives cocoon for the duration of the season, many are working on new hobbies and making their homes cozier and more inviting. Our homes, as they say, are a reflection of ourselves, and with wellness becoming increasingly embedded into our day-to-day, it’s only natural to shop for gifts that promote self-care.

The Campus Store at Northwestern Health Sciences University (NWHSU) in Bloomington takes great pride in its varied inventory; it’s helped the surrounding communities stay healthy for decades with best-in-class vitamins, clinical products, and healthy living essentials. “Because we’re part of a unique school like NWHSU, we’re used to thinking outside the box about gifts,” says Jason Garcia, store manager. “We love to be able to offer things that have wellness benefits and also make you feel good about gift-giving. We want to help you by taking some of the stress away from holiday shopping.”

Bringing green space in

Mountain Valley’s herb growing kits are a great gift for those with a green thumb or people who want to learn to garden indoors. From peppermint to basil, the kits produce herbs for cooking or making herbal tea, and come with trays, seeds, and instructions. They just require light and water to start producing a gift that keeps on giving. Kits ($16), from Campus Store at Northwestern Health Sciences University, 2501 W. 84th St., Door #2, Bloomington,

Similarly, Handy Pantry’s microgreen kits and mini pet grass kits produce tender shoots to help our human and animal loved ones eat healthy. Complete with a reusable tub, the microgreen kits include an organic seed mix that produces cabbage, broccoli, arugula, kohlrabi, and kale microgreens. Kit ($8), also from Campus Store at NWHSU,

Abundant ambiance

The warm glow from candles goes a long way toward making spaces feel cozy and relaxing. Take it to the next level with candles that promote wellbeing with aromatherapy, focused on the body’s seven chakras or energy points. Colored chakra candles from Aloha Bay are infused with essential oils, with seven varieties that focus on a specific chakra. For example, the green healing candle centers on the heart chakra, featuring lavandin, orange, and tangerine. Votives ($2.75), pillars ($8.75), also from Campus Store at NWHSU,

Himalayan salt lamps are another light source with added benefits. Made from blocks of pure pink salt crystals, the lamps come in a variety of shapes and sizes. They can be lit with candles or electricity, imbuing spaces with a warm pink glow. Many appreciate the lamps for their air purification and mood boosting qualities. Salt lamps (starting at $17.95), also from Campus Store at NWHSU,

For the kids

Everyone in the family is happy when the little ones are sleeping well. The multi-functional Mella Sleep Trainer works as a night light, music player, and white noise machine that soothes and calms babies and small children. The display also teaches them through changing colors and faces when it’s time to wake up, keeping kiddos in bed longer. That’s a win for everyone! Mella sleep trainer ($50), also from Campus Store at NWHSU,

People of all ages have grown to enjoy weighted blankets. They benefit from the blankets’ deep pressure stimulation that reduces stress and anxiety. Good Banana adds a bit of fun with their weighted throws for kids. Check out the smiley pepperoni pizza and rainbow blankets to bring some coziness and a calm to the little ones in your life. The store also carries Sleep Philosophy’s 10-pound weighted blankets for adults. Throws ($60), blankets ($74), also from Campus Store at NWHSU,

Treat yourself (at home)

Foam rollers do wonders to relieve tight muscles, but they can be a bit bulky. Tiger Tail makes a thinner, more narrow massage roller that combines the features of a foam roller and rolling pin. Available in 18- and 22-inch-long sizes, they target sole muscles, minor aches, and knots. Tiger Tails foster muscle compression, trigger point release, and stretching—all from the comfort of your home, or wherever you may be. Tiger Tail massage roller (starting at $24.99), also from Campus Store at NWHSU,

Shaped like a shepherd’s hook, the Thera Cane back massage tool can be used to ease tense spots in your back. It’s known for its ergonomic design and seven strategically placed balls that apply pressure and provide full-body massage. Thera Cane back massager ($39.95), also from Campus Store at NWHSU,

Another massager, the Thumper Sport, is an electric self-massage tool that releases muscle tension, increases blood flow, and reduces pain. The deep-tissue massager is lightweight and features a long handle that makes it easy to use on the back, legs, arms, feet, and shoulders. After a big day of skiing or shoveling, this massager does the trick. Thumper Sport massager ($139), also from Campus Store at NWHSU,

As people return to the office in 2022, many backs will need extra love and care. BackJoy SitSmart products can help by guiding users to sit with correct posture. The Posture Plus chair inserts work for any seating. They rock the hips forward to maintain the curvature of the spine and prevent lower back soreness. Posture Plus chair insert ($39.99), also from Campus Store at NWHSU,