Fall in Love with Fall

Fall is by far my favorite season. I enjoy the cool nights, apples and pumpkins and warming meals. I also update my health routine a bit to adjust with the changing season. Here are 5 tips to help you stay healthy this fall season.

1. Combat fall allergies. People who are susceptible to spring allergies have a greater chance of having fall allergies as well. Fall allergies include ragweed as the biggest culprit, along with weed pollen and mold (mold grows in moist areas, think wet pile of leaves outside). Once fall comes, I regularly use a neti pot or nasaflo. This is a wonderful drug-free way to flush allergens and pollutants out of the sinuses (always use distilled, bottled or boiled and cooled down water). Always wash bed linens in hot water, vacuum frequently, keep windows closed during the day when allergen levels peak and use a HEPA air purifier.

2. Get your vitamin D. The shorter days means we get less and less vitamin D as the days get shorter. Most people do not get enough vitamin D, so it's a good idea to talk to your doctor about a supplement and how much you should be getting. Vitamin D is crucial for absorption of calcium for bone density, immune function and reduction of inflammation.

3. Get out and move. The cooler weather is optimal time to get outside and get moving. Hiking, biking, running and yard work are all great ways to get cardiovascular work in without feeling the oppressive heat and humidity from summer. If you suffer from allergies, enjoy the outdoors early in the morning or later in the day.

4. Eat with the season. Fall brings an abundance of delicious and healthy fruits and vegetables to incorporate in your diet. Apples, pumpkin, cranberries, squash, carrots, brussels sprouts are plentiful and filled with vitamins and nutrients. And remember, the more 'sweet' vegetables you can incorporate into your diet like carrots, butternut squash and sweet potatoes, the less like you will have cravings for sugar!

5. Try something new. A change in season is a great time to try something new. Perhaps an art class, dance class, anything that you've been wanting to try! Trying something new engages your brain to keep it performing at optimal levels.

"Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns." - George Eliot