In our neck of the world, September is a time of return. Return to work, to school and the grounded rhythms of caring for the needs of life. Fun and free Summer is in the rear-view mirror, even if the joy of it lives in our heart. Fall has landed in our laps, asking us to have intention and to engage our communities. Taking care of self, taking care of others chief among Fall’s tasks.
May your time of Return be a blessing that supports health and evokes gratitude!
The seasonal and social changes that come with the Fall offer up particular challenges to the health of body and mind. Here are my 10 favorite tips for taking care of your body and mind in the Autumn.
10. Keep your Feet and Neck Warm- On chilly mornings and windy days, don’t make your body expend energy staying warm. Covered feet and necks make it easier on the body to channel energy into staying healthy.
9. Eat with Season- Asian Pears, Pears and Apples are good for the lungs…these late Summer foods slowly can give way to culinary mushrooms, squashes, root vegetables and winter greens. There is a wisdom between when something is harvest-able and what the body needs. Trust it!
8. Have Sugar Limits: Processed sugars not only promote mood swings but they make the body more vulnerable to getting sick. Always avoid sugar when you are actively trying fight off a cold or flu.
7. Warming Foods– as the weather starts to cool, increase the proportion of cooked foods, soups and stews (bone broth soup is an excellent immune tonic). This includes adding peppers, garlic, onions and spices that aid the health of the body.
6. Challenge Yourself Physically- When we open our lungs and circulate our blood it’s the kind of stress our bodies thrive on. Plus, when we moderately sweat we support our immunity. So not only exercise, but If you are sick, wait until some energy starts to return and then gentle and light exercises is recommended on the tail end of it to being to move the gunk out.
5. Tone Your Immune System- While all of these tips will help your immune system, getting acupuncture, taking herbs like Jade Screen Formula can also strengthen your body. Using moxa Stomach 36 is also a great way to build the immune system.
4. Take care of Your Mental Well-being– Each season has it’s own motion, emotional and otherwise. Fall is a time of letting go and sadness, but it is also a time of spiritual clarity and integrity. Surrendering into the seasonal changes by honoring the emotions you have within. In Fall, we are asked to “let go” of the peak ligh and power Summer brings. Releasing from this high energy time into the settling of Fall can bring a range of feelings. Listen to them and once the feelings are experienced, seek a way to the other side by finding the wisdom and meaning of these changes. Syncing with your feelings and the seasson will definitely help your mental well-being.
3. Wash Your Hands- Okay back to basics here, but even if you haven’t been to the bathroom…washing hands before and after mingling with groups and being in public places will reduce the spread of colds and flu. Overlooked but probably the most effective habit for staying healthy.
2. Sleep More- That’s right… big permission to get that extra 30 minutes of rest… nothing stresses the body out and weakens the immune system like too little sleep… How much are you really getting from that show/social media/news outlet anyway? Set a timer on your wifi, shut off your phone and give yourself that give of deeper rest.
1. Love Life- There’s no substitute for love. Self-love, loving others or find love for this crazy-beautiful world. Love is the invisible glue that holds the world together. It’s also the key to any health practice and should be front and center in your health motivation. Do what you love and what loves you back and the key to fulfilled living will be yours this Autumn and every other season.