My wife was born and raised in Northwest Arkansas. We met, dated and married at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. You couldn’t do that and not develop a fascination and joy in the colors of Fall. Even now we take an annual trip to somewhere where we can watch the beauty of Nature fading from green to shades of red, orange and yellow.
So, I decided to spend a few minutes reflecting on other of our life’s activities that help to make Fall both uplifting and healthy!
Fall is harvest time. Apples; many varieties of winter squash; green vegetables like cabbage, broccoli and Brussels sprouts; and onions – all these and more speak of harvest and planning root cellars so we can enjoy the freshness of the harvest all through the winter months. And for things that don’t overwinter so well – like beans, peas, corn, cucumbers, and peppers – this is the time for canning. That’s an all Summer and Fall activity at our house. So, by the end of Fall the pantry is full of sauerkraut, vegetable soups, jellies, jams, pickles (cucumber, squash, and okra varieties); and the freezer is full of berries, beans and other Summer bounty.
That’s the good! But Fall is also the time for Seasonal Allergies – a bane for many! The last of the pollen sprays: ragweed, pine, mold & mildew, indoor pet dander & fur, and dust mites to name a few, are contentious at best; nagging at worst! Many deal with sniffles, sneezing, itchy throats, teary red eyes, etc., during this season. A simple internet search of Fall allergies lists many common prevention methods to avoid these symptoms. But there are also a number of herbal solutions. Some boost your immune system, and some bear names like “Seasonal Allergies” that promote herbs that counter many of the common symptoms. These days, you don’t really have to “suffer” with most symptoms.
We know that sunshine is important for the production of vitamin D, which is an immune system boost that the body produces from sunshine on the skin. You might consider a vitamin D supplement during the Fall and Winter to promote a healthier immune system. And sunshine also enhances to our moods and there is also an increase is depression or simple moodiness in the Fall. Find activities that energize you or stimulate good feelings for your Fall enjoyment. You might also consider a supplement that elevates your mood.
Adding to the “moodiness of the Fall is that we now use Daylight Savings Time. While some feel this gives them some extra daylight to get outdoor activities done, it does complicate our natural circadian rhythm. Wikipedia states this is “a natural, internal process that regulates the sleep-wake cycle and repeats on each rotation of the Earth roughly every 24 hours”. When I used to travel overseas regularly years ago, I was told that for each time zone you transited you need a day to reset this natural rhythm. So while we’re only talking about one hour here, many people report the onset of sleep problems that, for some, last more than a day to get their body rhythms back in sync.
For my family, Fall is a beautiful time of the year. We love the color, take a couple of extra supplements, enjoy the bounty of the season and look forward to a decrease in the busyness of the Summer. I pray that your Fall brings pleasant respites as well! Good health and God’s blessings!
– For more information, contact Naturopathic Doctor Randy Lee, owner of The Health Patch at 1024 S. Douglas Blvd, Midwest City, at 405-736-1030 or e-mail pawpaw@TheHealthPatch.com or visit www.thehealthpatch.com.