Simple ways to stay healthy with the change of Seasons
Updated: Dec 2, 2019
Late summer is here and autumn is fast approaching in Colorado. The trees are beginning to change color and the light is waning. This is traditionally a time of harvest and celebration for all the earth has provided us over the glorious summer. Pumpkins, winter squash, corn, tomatoes, melons, beans, celery and broccoli are all reaching their peak and the time of root vegetables is coming on- potatoes, carrots, beets, turnips, parsnips and rutabagas. The nights are suddenly getting much colder and the days are subtly getting shorter and shorter. The kiddos are heading back to school and with the changing of the seasons (especially into the cooler months) it’s common to have an influx of colds and flus going around.
There are many things you can do to ease your body into this transition of the seasons and keep yourself healthy, as well as recover from illnesses with grace.
1. Exercise- now’s an excellent time to enjoy the fall colors and continue getting a balanced amount of exercise. Breathing fresh air and getting sunshine help keep our bodies in rhythm with the seasons, and keep our Qi (or vital energy) moving.
2. Layers- it’s common to want to linger in the tank tops, shorts and sandals of summer, but as the weather gets cooler it’s important to keep warm. Wearing layers allows for the fluctuations as it goes from 50 to 80 degrees. Scarves, hats, and keeping your feet warm are essential as the weather gets colder.
3. Rest- It’s natural to feel more tired with the change of seasons, extra rest or “yin” time is helpful to prevent illness. This could include extra sleep, gentle yoga, tai chi and Qi gong, meditation, or naps. It’s helpful to have routines for bed and waking and set times when you take breaks from phones or devices. All this allows the body, mind and spirit to rest and relax deeper as we move into the colder, darker, yin time of winter.
4. Cooking with the seasons- good food is the cornerstone of good health, and we have such wonderful local food available to us here at the farmers markets and local CSA’s. Soup, stews and root bakes are nourishing, delicious and warming for the whole body.
5. Even emotions- often missed is how our emotions affect our health and wellbeing, and while noticing your sad and deciding you’re going to be happy isn’t going to happen overnight, finding a balance and healthy outlet for our emotions is key.
6. Acupuncture and herbs- the saying, “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” is the basic tenet of TCM. Acupuncture and herbs can help build the immune system, move stuck energy, and expel pathogens before they get a chance to get a foothold and really take us down for the count.