Our bodies are designed to be in tune with the natural changes that occur in each season of the year. When we regulate ourselves to the natural rhythm of the changing seasons, we can find more physical, spiritual and emotional balance, resulting in better health and less frequent illness. In the fall, we are transitioning from long, hot, active summer days into cooler weather and shortened daylight hours; hence we need to focus on warming foods that will give us the nourishment we need. This is a season when we are particularly susceptible to illness, and by following a few basic and simple steps, we can safeguard our health during this time of transition.
1) Avoid or limit consumption of ice-cold foods and beverages. Ice-cold foods and beverages can chill our bodies and significantly weaken digestion, leaving us more prone to illness. This season, focus on warm cooked foods such as soups and baked dishes, while seasoning your meals with ginger root and black pepper for added warmth.
2) Eat seasonal foods to help boost immunity. One great way to allow our bodies to be more in tune with the changing seasons is to shop for fresh, locally grown and seasonal foods that offer us optimal nutrition in every season and support us as we adapt to the changing weather. Some great seasonal foods for the fall include:
- Squash varieties: butternut, acorn and delacata.
- Root veggies: carrots, beets, and potatoes.
- Dark green leafy veggies: kale, collards, broccoli, and cabbages.
- Seasonal fruits: apples, pears, and grapes.
Onions, leeks and garlic are also great seasonal foods that can help boost your immunity in the fall months. Farmer’s markets are a great place to find the most fresh and seasonal foods available in your area.
3) Stay well hydrated to avoid chapped lips, and chaffed skin. In addition to drinking enough water, warm herbal teas are a great addition to your fall diet, especially those that include ginger and cinnamon for extra warmth. Be sure to use extra moisturizer on your hands and lips to avoid dryness from the cold weather.
4) Dress for the weather by making sure you layer up on cold mornings and chilly evenings. It is especially important to keep your neck, ears, and feet warm, so wear a scarf and warm leggings, break out your fall boots, and be sure to keep your kiddos covered up and cozy on cold days to help prevent illnesses.
5) Be sure to wash your hands and your children’s hands before eating! Never underestimate how much this simple step can protect you from unwanted germs and pathogens floating around this fall.
6) Allow time for creative introspection. As we shift from the long, hot, active days of summer into the colder and shorter days of fall, now is the time to release what is old or unneeded, and accept new changes in our lives. Finding meditative and creative outlets like writing, drawing, stretching, walking, or even reorganizing your pantry can help offer us creative ways to process, release, and adapt to the changes and challenges in our lives.
Look out for a nutritious, and warming recipe, coming soon!
Wishing you all a healthy Fall!