Contact us | Membership Enquiries 0800 028 0245 | Search

Independent health store advice for wellbeing in the festive season

If you are looking for advice on natural health and wellbeing then your local independent health stores are the place to start.

By shopping locally you can find a world of discovery and a range of fresh and exciting products on your doorstep. We asked independent health store owners (and Bira members) if they could share their expertise on nutrition and wellbeing best practices – and we weren’t disappointed.

Take a look at the latest snippets of advice from your local health store retailers.

Drinking in the festive season
  1.  This festive season make sure you eat plenty of fibre to help keep your digestive system tip top.
  2. If you are looking for a tipple to enjoy over the festive period but you want to keep your alcohol consumption down, you can now feel like you’re making zero sacrifices when it comes to flavour with Vendome Mademoiselle, an organic zero alcohol merlot.
  3. Christmas isn’t necessarily headache free but Seedlip alcohol-free gin is! Seedlip is the world’s first distilled non-alcoholic spirit providing the perfect tipple treat without the guilt.
  4. Effervescent fermented kombucha is a great pick me up and alternative Christmas drink. Containing live cultures, it’s a great source of probiotics & can help aid digestion.

Independent retailer favourite: THREE GINGER VODKA SPRITZER –  One of our absolute favourites for helping to stoke your inner fires, ginger root is a dream come true for mixologists too. Both spicy and sweet, ginger can be just the ingredient to give a cocktail recipe a fiery zing and really bring it to life. Check out the full recipe here. And remember, if you do choose to opt for an alcoholic drink this Christmas do your liver a favour –  make sure you have some milk thistle handy to help relieve the symptoms of over-indulgence.

Making better dietary choices
  1. Did you know there are over 50 different types of sugar! And 1 in 10 brits reaches their maximum daily allowance by 11am! How many sugars do you know?
  2. There are surprising benefits of going gluten-free; improves cholesterol levels, promotes digestive health, can increase energy levels and cuts out processed foods from your diet. Check out gluten-free granola, cornflakes, pasta and flour for starters.
  3. If you fancy a snack with a difference try Hummus Chips in tomato and basil or Lentil Chips in Chilli and lemon flavour. They are allergen-free, artificial ingredient free and 40% less fat than a standard potato crisp.
  4. Plant-based milks are on the rise: A quarter of Britons are drinking them. Check out your local health store for healthy, organic, dairy-free alternatives.

Lentil chips can be found in your local independent health store Nondiary milk substitutes

Looking after your health and wellbeing
  1. Did you know that cholesterol is essential for a healthy body? To help maintain a healthy level and ratio of HDL/LDL (good/bad cholesterol) cut down on saturated fats (fats that solidify) use olive oil, eat fish and nuts for healthy omega fats, oats, soya and garlic. Ask in your local health store about Natures Aid Red Yeast Rice.
  2. The herb Ginkgo biloba is a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory. Ginkgo biloba benefits may include maintaining good blood circulation and supporting cognitive functions (such as memory, recall and processing). The powerful antioxidant helps protect the cells, including the brain cells from oxidative stress.
  3. New research has indicated that as many as 3 in 5 brits have insufficient levels of Vitamin D in the winter. Vitamin D is essential for a healthy immune system. Everyone needs to supplement with Vitamin D – It’s Official! Check out your local health store for options.
  4. Researchers have discovered that bacteria living in the gut of an overweight person are completely different to those residing inside a slim person. Furthermore, these scientists have discovered that our bacteria are in communication with our brain and can make us crave the type of food they thrive on!
  5. You know the old wives tale about oysters being an aphrodisiac, well there is actually some truth to the tale! Oysters are especially high in zinc, which is also found in Pumpkin Seeds, Ginger Root and Brazil Nuts.  Zinc is critical to healthy male sex hormone function. White spots on the fingernails or poor wound healing can indicate a zinc deficiency. But don’t worry if you are a vegan or don’t like oysters, your local health store stock a wide supply of zinc supplements.

Local health stores are more than just another store. They are the heart of your community providing employment, good health advice and an abundance of organic and natural products you won’t find in supermarkets or large chains. Find your local health store by using the NAHS health store locator and support those who support your local community!

We’re proud to support independent health stores.
Bira are proud to be working with the NAHS to help drive the UK health food trade forward.
Find out more


Are you an independent health store retailer who would like to contribute to Bira’s retailer tips? If so, email your advice to to be featured on the Bira website and social media channels.



With thanks to the Your Healthy Life Shop and the NAHS