Living a healthy lifestyle is rooted in balance. As seasons change, our lifestyle changes too. Our foods, fitness, and hobbies shift; some shifts help, others hinder. For example, you probably don’t have to try too hard to drink water and stay active in the warmer months. But instinctively, as the cooler months come near, humans tend to want to bundle up indoors and ‘hibernate’. Our taste buds yearn for warm, thick foods and we might opt for an evening in on the couch over a walk outdoors. And many of these seasonal shifts are beneficial … as long as we maintain balance.

Seasonal Shifts

FOOD

As temps cool, our taste buds have us reaching for warm chili, thick soups and stews, and oven-roasted meals. Our body is surprisingly in tune with what’s in season. Embrace those cravings and start buying what’s in season. Brussels sprouts, potatoes, carrots, sweet potatoes, squashes, rutabagas, parsnips, turnips, beans, and pumpkins are nutrient-packed foods that you can enjoy for both taste and health. Enjoy your fruits baked, rather than raw. Opt for baking apples and pears with a touch of cinnamon and honey.

MOVEMENT

Does your fitness routine need a pick-me-up? There is no better time than fall. With the sun rising earlier, now is the time to set that alarm clock a bit earlier and start your day with a small bit of movement. Enjoy a walk in the crisp, fresh air which helps wake us up and energize us for the day ahead. Staying indoors? Lay out a yoga mat or exercise mat somewhere in the home and do a few simple stretches to relieve stress and tension before the day begins. Feeling like your in a rut? Join a gym or local community center and participate in group exercise classes to get motivated.

HOBBIES

Fall is one of the most beautiful times of the year with popping colors and comfortable weather. Don’t miss out! Plan activities with friends and family to enjoy what this new season offers. Pumpkin picking, apple picking, corn mazes and haunted trails are all wonderful bonding opportunities. Your community most likely has some holiday-themed local fun runs and events. Check your newspaper for Halloween runs, turkey trots and reindeer romps, grab a friend, and sign up!

Don’t Fall For These Seasonal Slips

 

1. GAME DAY GOODIES

Fall sports are opportunities for lots of eating and drinking. Stick to light beer, and opt to bring a veggie tray with hummus, or pretzel chips and salsa.

2. BAKING BRENDA

Do you have a Baking Brenda at the office? When those delicious pumpkin-flavored baked goods fill the lunch room, enjoy them in moderation but don’t overindulge. Plan ahead and always have healthy snack options on hand so you can still enjoy a snack without all the sugar.

3. PUMPKIN-SPICE LATTE

A pumpkin-spiced latte is packed with a whopping 420 calories and 50 grams of sugar. Although, delicious, you better prepare yourself for an energy-crash. Instead of saying no to your favored fall drink, opt for non-fat with no whip or order a cafe latte, non-fat, with no whip. Check out how to make your own PSL here!

4. HALLOWEEN HANGOVER

Do you wake up the morning after Halloween with a stomach ache from all the candy? Shop smart this holiday and only buy candy to hand out that you don’t like. Check out this link to see what 100 calories of candy looks like.

5. FALL FLUIDS

Even though you may feel less thirsty this season, stay on top of your hydration. Carry a water bottle around or try warm lemon water. Green tea and black tea contain antioxidants that help ward off diseases during flu season.