As cooler weather sets in, it’s time to bundle up, enjoy warm drinks and nature walks, and embrace the flavors of the season. Seasonal Fall foods aren’t just rich in flavor but are also packed with nutrition and health benefits known to boost the immune system.
Here are five Fall flavors to incorporate into your diet (be sure to select organic/ biodynamic whenever possible):
Apples are high in fiber and promote gut health. They contain high amounts of antioxidants that may reduce the risk of cancer, decrease lipid oxidation, and even lower cholesterol. Eat apples whole, chop them in a salad, or add cooked apples to your oatmeal this season.
This wonderful aromatic spice has high nutritional qualities due primarily to its essential oil component, cinnamaldehyde. It has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which have a positive effect on blood glucose and cholesterol. Cinnamon can even prevent tooth decay and bad breath because of its antibacterial and neuroprotective qualities! Dash some cinnamon in your coffee, dust it on apple wedges, or sprinkle it on oatmeal or tea for a delightful flavor boost.
Ginger is known to be one of the healthiest spices on the planet and has a long history of use in traditional Southern Asian cuisines. Its principal compound gingerol provides its fragrance, flavor, and medicinal properties. Extremely useful as a digestive aid, ginger can alleviate nausea and vomiting. It also has antioxidant properties, can promote repair through its anti-inflammatory qualities, and can help manage optimum weight. Use it soups and stews, in stir fry and curry dishes or add it to your morning smoothie.
Brussels sprouts are packed with nutrients. They are high in fiber, low in calories, antioxidant-rich (Vitamin C) and a good source of Vitamin K. They are part of the Brassica family, and contain sulforaphane, a vital antioxidant and cancer protective nutrient that is one of the recommended bio detox foods. Boil or steam them, roast them, or use them in stir fries or shredded in salads.
Sweet potatoes contain a delicious blend of antioxidants and balanced fiber that promotes growth of healthy bacteria in the gut. They also support vision health through their high levels of beta carotene and anthocyanins. Sweet potatoes are extremely versatile: bake them, boil them, use them to make breakfast hash, in a stew or in a pie…the possibilities are endless.
As Fall approaches, be sure to incorporate some of these flavors to your diet and improve your health as well!