After a long, bountiful summer, autumn is finally here. To some, it's a welcomed change; to others, not so much. Regardless, I's a time of year we all must go through, and there are several ways to make it a great one. To ensure your health and happiness are at their peak this season, here are a few ways to celebrate the arrival of fall. By celebrate, I simply mean ways in which you can transform this season into something worth celebrating. By following these tips, you will enjoy a bountiful autumn and prosper.
Do damage control
Fill up on autumn beauty foods rich in healing nutrients (sweet potatoes, red cabbage, pumpkin, and broccoli are great picks), and you'll give your body the tools it needs to repair and rejuvenate your skin after a long, hot summer. Autumn beauty foods are particularly rich in vitamin A, one of the most restorative nutrients for your skin, hair, and nails. Do your best to eat as seasonally as possible and you'll notice your body will feel differently than if you continued to eat things out of season. The foods during autumn are designed to rejuvenate and nourish you, and you might even find yourself craving more of them naturally as the days grow shorter. Visit your local farmer’s market to get a better glimpse as to what's in season this fall and you'll realize there's more to autumn than just apples and pumpkins.
Skip the sugar
Refined sugar is the number one food enemy of a youthful complexion, so be choosy when faced with baked goods and sweets during the holidays. When a celebration (or sweet tooth) calls, whip up some healthy fall desserts, or a few oatmeal cranberry cookies to share. Sometimes, substituting sugar with fruit can help, but remember to eat seasonal fruit. Some fruit that's seasonal to autumn: apples, pears, cranberries, figs, grapes, pomegranates, and persimmons. Be sure to stock up on these during this season and eat some whenever you're craving something sweet. Refined sugar will take a back burner when you have a whole bunch of natural sugar to replace it!
When you're stuck indoors during the autumn and winter months, it's easy for your body to lack a connection to the earth. Many people find that root vegetables like sweet potatoes, turnips, and beets ground their energy and provide a feeling of strength and stability during the colder seasons. I highly suggest concocting some sort of soup or stew that utilizes some root vegetables. Carrots, parsnips, and turnips taste great when mixed with vegetable broth, onions, lentils, and some herbs. If you're not a huge fan of root vegetables, why not incorporate just one into your soup? Here's one of my favorites: Healthy carrot soup. It incorporates other vegetables (not just root vegetables) into the mix.
Light your digestive fire
Improving your digestion will strengthen your beauty and immunity for the months ahead. Take a daily probiotic, snack on fermented food, and make a cranberry orange digestion tonic. All these things combined will give you effective digestion. Also, don't forget: When you eat a meal, chew each mouthful well (twenty to thirty times, if you can) to break down food in your mouth and lessen the load on the rest of your digestive system. Some examples of fermented foods worth eating (and making) include miso, kimchi, brined pickles, kefir, kombucha, tempeh, and sauerkraut. These contain natural probiotics. Since they're fermented, they have already begun to break down due to the presence of yeast or bacteria. The process of fermentation makes foods more digestible, and endows them with trillions of beneficial (not harmful) bacteria. Eating them is delicious and helpful to the gut. I suggest starting slow and working a small portion of fermented foods into your diet. As your body adjusts, aim for two or three small servings a day of fermented foods.
Let go of unhealthy foods
Autumn is the season of letting go. Instead of falling into beauty-busting (and diet-busting) habits that take a toll on your appearance, let go of them now. Whether it be chips, ice cream, or baked goods, stop purchasing it. It's only going to affect your health and your looks. Food is connected to the skin in more ways than one, after all. If you eat too much junk food, chances are you'll be more prone to seemingly random break outs. Either that, or your skin will lose its luster. By getting rid of the foods that ail your appearance and overall health, you'll be doing your body a kindness. Be proud of your decision to nourish your beauty all year long.