The post summer months are an important time for health, as we physically and mentally prepare for the double challenges of cold weather and a hectic Christmas season. Although spring gets a more positive rap, autumn is a joyful time, with cosy cups of tea and an abundance of fresh produce.
“Autumn is a second spring, when every leaf is a flower."
1. Eat the Rainbow
Autumn is a traditional harvest season, with bountiful produce available, packed full of goodness. It’s a great time to boost your nutrient levels the natural way, by eating lots of seasonal fruits and veggies. If you have freezer space, or talents in preserving food, you can prepare supplies for upcoming months. For autumn food, imagine painting a warming autumnal scene. Carrots, pumpkin, squash and sweetcorn for the orange and yellow hues. Beetroot, plums and blackberries to add a bold purple note. Cabbage, kale, apples and watercress for rich green hues. Various spices are also well suited to colder climate cooking and are rich in nutrients. Cinnamon with autumn fruits, cumin and chili with roasted or mashed root vegetables, garlic and ginger with winter greens. Looking for a recipe idea that both celebrates autumn colours and dials up the spice? Try our Warming Soup.
2. Cherish the Light
Shorter days make it even more important to plan time outside and capture as much daylight as possible, especially right now before the darker months. Being outside can also provide vital exercise and fresh air, so plan a walk around the block before your morning tea and time in the garden, or local park, at lunchtime. However, even if you maximise sunlight, it can still be hard to keep Vitamin D levels at their optimal level. And this nutrient is vital to our immunity, especially when it is at its weakest. It is recommended by many experts, including the NHS in the UK, that people boost with a supplement containing a high dose of Vitamin D.
3. Boost your Reserves
To fare well in winter, it makes sense to optimise your health in autumn, so that you can start the cold season in the best possible shape. This means a robust level of immunity, strong musculoskeletal system and a healthy gut. These vital systems are much helped by thoughtful food choices, meaning a nutrient-rich diet. In boosting immunity, nutrients such as Vitamins C & D are well known to help. But lesser-known ones, such as Vitamins A, E, Copper, Selenium and Zinc, also have strong evidence linking them to immune system support. A healthy diet, of colourful veggies and low sugar fruits, is a great source of these nutrients. But for some people, a high-quality, high-strength supplement can also help. In autumn time, it pays to think like a squirrel: stock up now, for tougher times ahead.