Looking for the perfect book for the wellness lover in your life? Look no further. Suzanne Leyden from WellNow Co. shares her highlights from 2019.
1. Happy Pear's Recipes for Happiness
Split into two sections, 'Eating Happy' and ‘Living Happy’, the Happy Pear’s most recent cookbook, Recipes For Happiness is well structured and has something for everyone. There are quick meal ideas along with some more adventurous recipes.
Known for their sensational curry dishes, this book does not disappoint with some of my faves: dahl, bean chilli and massaman curry. The ‘Can’t Believe It’s Not’ section has healthy alternative recipes for some familiar not-so-healthy dishes like sausage rolls.
We love the kid's lunch section, although it might be a stretch for an unadventurous child’s palette but works well for a good office lunch. There are some really useful resources to help you get started on eating healthily and acknowledge there are rules and structure to follow to make it happen. But it’s definitely worth it.
2. The Burnout Solution – 12 Weeks To A Calmer You by Siobhan Murray
If we have never felt at some point that we are burnt out, whether it be from a job or personal circumstances, then we probably have had the thought run through our head that we are heading that way if we don't make some fundamental changes to the way we are living.
Our lives are so fully charged compared to even just 10 years ago. The Burnout Solution, by psychotherapist and coach Siobhan Murray, has a very hands-on approach and walks you through what burnout is. She explains how it’s not caused just by being in a highly-pressured job but can come about for anyone depending on their own personal circumstances. It’s almost chronic overwhelm.
There are quizzes to help you assess how burnt out you may be. The following 12 chapters are designed as a guide to complete each one in a week so that after 12 weeks you should be feeling calm and in control.
Read our full review here.
3. Stress Solution by Dr. Rangan Chatterjee
The links between stress and your health are long-established. Find out what's causing the stress and you’ll get better. Well, if it was only that simple!
The Stress Solution, by Dr. Rangan Chatterjee, is jam-packed full of information on causes of stress and how to manage it. The four sections in the book are Body, Mind, Relationships, and Purpose and the simplicity of the approach makes the book really effective.
Dr. Chatterjee highlights points within these topics that would ordinarily be easily overlooked such as the fundamental importance of connection with loved ones and the impact of nurturing relationships to stay healthy. He also explains effective tools used in coaching that I know to work extremely well, such as reframing, positive affirmations, and scheduling. In addition to this, he discusses the importance of good nutrition, sleeping well and exercise and their connection to stress and also how to improve them.
This is a beautifully produced book with a very practical and tangible approach to reducing stress, A must for most people in this always-on world, and after the frantic lead-up to Christmas. Read our full review here.
4. The Baby-Friendly Family Cookbook
This book is bursting at the seams with 150 healthy, practical, easy and diverse recipes for the busy family. Written by Aileen Cox Blundell, the force behind Baby-Led Feeding, The Baby-Friendly Family Cookbook is beautifully produced with great photography, which makes for a lovely gift.
A favourite recipe that I’ve done to date is the falafel one. With so many of her recipes she manages to load them with veggies so that even the fussiest of eaters will still be getting a varied and healthy diet into them, something we love in The WellNow Co!
In addition to all the sweet and savoury recipes, Aileen includes practical advice including how to cook for a vegetarian, safety tips around baby-led feeding and the ultimate guide to fussy eating. It’s definitely a book to have for any busy household keen to get a variety of healthy food into their daily diet and have a bit of fun along the way!
5. Mediterranean Mood Food Book
If you've already been aware of healthy eating in Ireland, you will probably be familiar with the author and Dietitian, Paula Mee. And has co-authored two books previously, Gut Feeling and Your Middle Years: Love Them, Live Them, Own Them.
In this book, Mediterranean Mood Food – What to eat to beat depression and live a longer, healthier life, Mee focuses on food that, as part of the Mediterranean Diet, has been proven to improve your health and your mood.
The impact of making healthy changes and choices in what you eat is paramount to improving not only your physical wellbeing but your mental wellbeing also. It’s beautifully produced and has an informative introduction followed by an easy-to-follow section on ‘The 10 Pillars of the Mediterranean Mood Food Plan’. Each Pillar is an element of the Mediterranean diet to follow.
For each section, she covers ‘What to Eat’ and an explanation of why it works and is beneficial. Some of the pillars will have additional, relevant topics to give it a very rounded approach. The recipes are amazing, and the photography makes you hungry. This is definitely one cookbook to get and have for life, and a longer, healthier one if you follow it!
6. In Praise of Walking by Shane O'Mara
The new science of how we walk and why it is good for us by Shane O'Mara. This book considers many facets of walking: why it’s good for us, the evolutionary development and adaptations that enabled humans to walk and their ability to migrate because of it.
His ode to this mode of motion addresses the multitude of health benefits to walking. The physical strength and flexibility it gives the human body, keeping us youthful and energetic. It gives us the ability to clear our head and be creative.
Walking allows us to be social and connect people together – whether hiking or having a walking meeting, whether in the countryside or the city. There are such positive benefits to such a seemingly simple act we take for granted and, for most of us, we do every day.
O’Mara examines these in great depth and makes you consider walking with a new filter of appreciation. It acts as both a brilliant motivational and also an inspirational tool to get you out walking every day, no matter where or what or for how long. It’s an inspiring read, a definite treat for Christmas.
7. Where the Wild Cooks Go – Recipes, Music, Poems and Cocktails
This book has 'rock chick' screaming from the pages. It is a form a love letter to a huge range of countries that Welsh singer, songwriter, author and broadcaster, Cerys Matthews has visited. At first glance, it could seem like a tourist take on each of the destinations, but you soon realise that there’s more to it than that.
Matthews has fresh insights into the places, giving interesting facts, quotes, staple and unusual recipes and songs that come from each place. From Morocco to Mexico to Dublin and everywhere in between, this book is a food and music lovers little escape from reality. Unlike any other cookbook, this one is a bit of a gem!
8. The Positive Habit - 6 Steps for Transforming Negative Thoughts to Positive Emotions by Fiona Brennan
This book has everything you need to transform your negative thoughts or outlook into a positive mindset. This can have an incredible impact on your mental health and your general wellbeing. In part one, author Fiona Brennan covers cultivating a positive mindset, embracing the negative and creating a peaceful presence. The tone of the book if very accessible making it very effective.
In part two of the book, Brennan covers 6 positive habits – Love, Calmness, Confidence, Gratitude, Hope and Happiness. And in her conclusion gives you way to sustain these six positive habits after completing the book. The book is also accompanied by complimentary audio hypnotherapies which enhance the whole experience.
The book is deeply rewarding for anybody who would like a positive boost to their life. I can highly recommend this.