As the summer season is slowly winding down it’s time to recharge from the fun, but hectic, summer pace and reset for the upcoming cooler weather. Heading into heated and dry indoors will put the extra effort upon us to keep hydrated, active and well without the benefit of outdoor sunshine and warm weather activities.
Fall brings about transition in many forms...trying something new or letting something go. Accordingly, we collected health tips from the experts to help you transition into this new season with grace and happiness.
Savor the Flavor - “The start of cooler weather is the perfect time to savor the flavors of your favorite fruits and vegetables. The fall is great for recipes that incorporate root vegetables like sweet potatoes, dark leafy greens such as kale, winter squash like pumpkin, and fruits that include apples, pears and pomegranates. Aside from satisfying your tastebuds these superfoods are low in calories and packed with vitamins and fiber. Try something new like turnip greens, butternut squash, or parsnips if you’re feeling adventurous. Choosing these nutritional superstars will boost your health and add flavor to your meals!” (Melissa O’Brien, RD, Jewel Osco)
Infuse - “Infuse your water to drink more of it. Here’s why: 75% of our brain consists of water making it essential for mental clarity. Water boosts metabolism. My favorite flavor: mojito (mint + lime)”. (Jessica Dogert, RD)
Fermented Foodie - “Become a fermented foodie. Here’s why: Bad belly bacteria is linked to weight gain & junk food cravings. Plus, probiotics are linked to an improved mood. How I get my fix: kombucha margaritas. Cheers!” (Jessica Dogert, RD)
See Eye-to-Eye - “Always view your cellphone, I-pad, TV or computer at eye level or above. For every inch forward your head is, it adds 12 more pounds of weight to your neck and immense pressure on your spine causing headaches and other symptoms. “Tech Neck” or “Text Neck” as we call it can be seen everywhere as people are always looking down at their devices. Look up!” (Dr. Shannon Painter, Universal Wellness Source)
Fitness is for Everybody - “Find 10 minutes every day to MOVE in your own way! If you can't make it to the gym, can't make a class, think about everything you CAN do! (Jenn Horwitz, Athleta Northbrook)
Here are some creative ways to stay active by Jenn:
- Park 10 minutes away from work to get a 10 minute walk in.
- Play a game with your kids and every time you hear a picked 'code word', do a squat!
- Ever listened to Pentatonix? We recommend you listen to their a cappella cover of 'Need your Love' and have a 3-minute dance party!
- On vacation? Do some “run-sightseeing” run 15 minutes in one direction and back. See what you can explore!”
Ginger in the Morning - “Throw a piece of ginger in your morning smoothie or juice to naturally boost immunity while also aiding in digestion. Plus it tastes spicy and delicious!” (Natalie Slater, Bake and Destroy)
Meditate - “Meditate to calm and center before making a decision.” (Linda Roberts, Whispers of Love)
Switching Recipes from Summer to Fall - Jill Zemas, Zemas Madhouse Foods
- Buy up berries at the farmers’ market late summer and freeze them for later use in holiday inspired berry muffins, berry waffles, berry crisps and pies. Folding in frozen berries into batter is much easier and gives you those antioxidants all year around.
- We love using fresh fall apples in pies, crisps, sautéed for eating on top of pancakes and waffles, or to make homemade applesauce in a crockpot which can also be used as an egg replacer in pancake and waffle batters, harvest muffins, pie fillings.
- Shredding zucchini, squeezing out excess water and using in muffins, quick breads and savory pancakes is a great way to incorporate those greens.
Any way you look at it, the days are getting shorter this upcoming season. With less daylight time and the looming transition from fall to winter’s threat of hibernation... wanting to eat more and sleep more, it’s no wonder that the fall season can sometimes be welcomed with sadness by some. But fall can also be a time of calm and quiet after an over-scheduled summer. It’s the distinctive smell of turning leaves, the cold crisp air, that first cup of hot apple cider, fall decorations, carving pumpkins, and so much more. So look forward to it!