Fall into healthy habits
By Meredith Cox, Staff Writer
It is finally here. The leaves are falling, the sun is setting, and the air is changing. We are in the heart of fall and can begin to enjoy all of the special things this short season has to offer. Here are some ways you can make the most of this busy time of the year.
Take advantage of the fall flavors. Warming spices make a huge appearance during October and November. Some popular ones include cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, cloves, turmeric, and ginger. These spices are key elements in some of our favorite fall foods, like pumpkin soup, banana bread, and apple crisp. Ginger aids in digestion by relaxing the gastrointestinal tract, turmeric helps keep the immune system strong, and cinnamon has antioxidant properties that help fight inflammation. So try to incorporate some of these spices into some of your regular food choices, like yogurt, oatmeal, and meat seasonings. They have strong flavors, so all you need is a pinch, which packs minimal calories with maximal benefits.
Enjoy fall foods. This includes apples, pumpkins, carrots, spinach, and sweet potatoes. These hearty foods will give you a warming, full feeling. Apples have a ton of fiber to make a great snack, pumpkin is full of vitamin A to keep your eyes sharp and can be used in soups, smoothies, and desserts, and spinach is an iron rich food that promotes blood circulation and energy metabolism. They are all in season so they will be super tasty and pretty affordable.
Get outside. The air may be getting colder, but it is the perfect temperature to break a sweat. Find a new trail or park to explore. The beautiful scenery will make a brisk walk, light jog, or hard run fly by. Plus, everyone has to admit the satisfying feeling they get when crunching a ton of fallen leaves under their shoes.
Get to bed early. We have officially reached daylight savings time. The sun is setting early, and the days will only continue to get shorter. Make sure you are getting enough sleep and taking advantage of the extra dark, night-time hours. The sun is also rising earlier now, so your internal clock may wake you up earlier than you are used to.
Get your flu shot. The last way you want to be spending the fall season is stuck in bed and all stuffed up. Go to the local CVS or even stop by the Health Center to get your flu shot for the year. The single best way to prevent the flu is to get the shot. Don’t wait until it is too late and you start to feel fatigue and achy. It only takes about 10 minutes and can save you from nearly 10 days of illness.
There is no telling how long the fall feelings and weather will last, so stick to some of these tips to fully appreciate and experience the autumn time.