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Five ways to stay healthy this fall/winter

Photo By Marg Seregelyi   2003

Much like the environment, our bodies respond to the changes in the seasons. It is important to help our bodies cope with these seasonal fluctuations by making changes to our routine, diet and supplement regime.

The Canadian Health Food Association (CHFA) has the following five tips to help you prepare for the shorter, colder days ahead so you will continue to thrive and feel great throughout the fall:


Eat in season

With the arrival of autumn, it’s always a good idea to change your diet, adding the delicious foods that the season offers. Fresh pumpkins, yams, squash, sweet potatoes, turnips, apples, pears and figs are all rich in fibre, vitamins and minerals. Pumpkins, squash and root vegetables are abundant in vitamin A and carotenoids, which give them their rich orange colour. Vitamin A and carotenoids are powerful anti-oxidants, which can help prevent premature aging and a number of serious illnesses. Make sure to Google The Dirty Dozen and the Clean 15 to know which fruits and vegetables are the most and least contaminated by pesticides.


Detox in season

A fall detox cleanse will help to stave off seasonal colds, keep your immune system healthy, and prepare you for the colder months ahead. Your local health food retailer sells a number of detox solutions, including teas and supplements. Shop for fall detoxifying foods, such as organic apples and beets. (See daily detox recipe)


Supplement in season

With the changing season, now is the perfect time to boost your immune system. As we start spending more time indoors, cold and flu bugs spread with more ease. Garlic pills, probiotics, vitamins B, C and D, E3 and zinc are all powerful supplements that will help boost your immune system and help you fight off the nasty bugs that spread in autumn and winter.


Boost your mood this season

As many as 20 percent of Canadians are affected by seasonal affective disorder (SAD); commonly known as the winter blues. This physiological mood disorder causes depressive symptoms during fall and winter, impacting people who have normal mental health throughout the rest of the year. To cope with the blues, make sure you are getting enough vitamin D, which is known to boost mood. In fall and winter, we can’t produce this vitamin because of the lack of exposure to UV rays from the sun. It’s a good idea to talk to your healthcare practitioner about the benefits of taking a vitamin D supplement.


Embrace the season

In between the rainy and windy days of autumn, the sun peeks through just as often. Fall days are made more beautiful with changing leaves and the warm sun. Autumn is filled with beauty. Embrace it and enjoy it before the long cold weather takes over.



Daily detox recipe

Lemon juice is great for digestion, destroying bacteria and cleansing the system  it supports the liver and kidneys to get rid of toxins. Cayenne pepper increases metabolism, stimulates the circulatory system, aids digestion, helps regulate blood sugar and more.

Drink a glass of this first thing in the morning. Make extra for sipping during the day to fight cravings.


Put a 1/4 teaspoon (more or less) of cayenne pepper into an eight-ounce glass of hot water. Cut a lemon in half. Squeeze as much of the fresh lemon as you can into the glass . Mix well. If you want, add a teaspoon of maple syrup or honey and stir well.


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