The Best Foods To Eat This Fall And Winter
Fall is definitely my favorite season. Depending on where you live, it’s a transitional time that’s taking your body from the heat and dryness of summer to preparing you for the cold, damp temperatures of winter.
Managing your diet and eating foods that are in season now will support your immune system and provide the nourishment that you need to stay strong and healthy.
Make sure to include these 5 food groups to your meal plan to stay in tip top shape for the upcoming cold, flu, and virus season.
1. Eat seasonally. Make sure your diet includes lots of colorful fruits and vegetables that are filled with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants to keep your body strong. Apples, grapes, lemons, grapefruit, and avocados are perfect this time of year. Enjoy root vegetables like beets, squash, potatoes, and turnips in hearty soups and stews. Don’t forget pumpkins and sweet potatoes. The make delicious desserts and side dishes.
2. Get high-quality protein. During the spring and summer months, you can get along quite well eating a mostly plant based diet, but just as nature goes through many changes, the body also experiences many changes. You have different needs than you had a few months ago. While fruits and vegetables do contain protein, now is the ideal time to enjoy a variety of high-quality animal products. They provide healthy fats that help strengthen your body and vitamins that are not found in plants. This is also a time that your body may be able to tolerate dairy and gluten, but buy organic whenever possible and introduce slowly
3. Oils and fats are essential to your diet during this season as well. Choose from almond or olive oil, avocados, grass fed butter or ghee (clarified butter). Nuts and nut butters also provide protein and healthy fats.
4. Grains and legumes provide fiber which helps improve digestion and elimination. They also help you feel full so you’re less likely to want to overeat or snack. Different types of beans and rice can be prepared ahead for quick, easy meals in minutes. Oats and nut flours made into cereal, muffins, or cookies are always a family favorite.
5. Warming spices are a wonderful addition to a fall/winter diet. Cinnamon, clove, allspice, and cardamon are delicious in your favorite cookies, muffins, or pies. Black pepper, cumin, dill, and bay leaves can be added to your nutritious soups and stews.
There are some foods to reduce or avoid this time of year. Typically, you’ll want your food warm or hot rather than cold and raw, so choose soups over a salad. Start your day with a warm drink, delicious omelette, and toast or choose something simple like hot cereal instead of cold cereal.
As always, try to eat a well balanced diet with fruits and vegetables as the largest portion. Plan to eat your last meal of the day early, so you have plenty of time to digest your food.
Fall is a beautiful time of year, so make the most of it. Spend time with your family and friends over the holidays and enjoy delicious, seasonal meals that promote health and wellness all yearlong.