Fall’s Foible: Falling Victim to Fatigue?

fall-day-in-old-town-alexandria-virginia-richard-hermanFall foliage. Red. Yellow. Purple. Magenta. Orange. A nip in the air and the scent of maple leaves and bonfires. A toast to hot apple cider, fuzzy turtleneck sweaters and taupe ankle booties. Opened windows winnowing crisp air as you snuggle underneath layers of heavy blankets and thick quilts. It’s camping without leaving your bedroom. Lung debris billowing in the sky like white, cottony dandelion seeds whisking far away in the wind.

You feel rejuvenated after enduring a humid, steamy and lethargic August. The seasonal transition is complete and now, all of a sudden, your bones feel achy and the summer sleepiness is knocking at your door again.

Your wintertime clock is tick-tocking as it prepares the body for seasonal eruptions. Less sunlight. Shorter days. Frigid temperatures. You hunker down inside closed doors, oftentimes neglecting evening runs or hikes, trading exercise for an hour of solitude with Netflix while sipping hot chocolate with whipped cream and nibbling on salted caramel dipped pumpkin biscotti . Your caveman instincts introduce poor lifestyle habits and compromise the immune system. That’s why it’s essential to absorb the following vitamins this winter…

  • Vitamin C – yellow bell peppers, kale, broccoli, strawberries, oranges, tomatoes

    • What you can whip up…
      • Stuffed bell peppers with couscous, ground turkey, mushrooms, zucchini, tomatoes, garlic, cilantro, ground pepper;
      • Kale minestrone with tomato paste, pasta, garlic, oregano, thyme, rosemary, and bacon for flavoring
      • Orange power smoothie with dates, banana, almond milk, coconut water, coconut chips, almond slivers, crushed ice, coconut peanut butter
  • Iron – oysters, chickpeas, pumpkin seeds, soy, beans, lentils, spinach

    • What you can whip up…
      •  Chickpea salad with onions, peppers, celery, red pepper flakes, and rosemary
      • Lentil soup with onions, carrots, celery, spinach, oregano, garlic, thyme, & basil
      • Spinach garlic pizza with mozzarella cheese, tomatoes, and rosemary
  • Vitamin C – Sweet potato, carrots, squash, dark leafy greens, dried apricots, tuna fish

    • What you can whip up…
      • Sweet potato casserole with brown sugar, eggs, and chopped pecans
      • Curried stuffed acorn squash with curry powder, brown rice, apple, raisins, and peanuts
      • Tuna fish with spicy pickled vegetables
  • Vitamin D – okra, collard greens, white beans, salmon, tofu, eggs, soy

What you can whip up…

  • Tuna tofu egg whites with red chili
  • Okra and tomatoes with white jasmine rice
  • Wasabi herb crusted salmon

Most importantly, maintain a well-balanced diet with a variety of fruits, vegetables, proteins, and carbs with limited sugar. There are many resistant exercises that you can do without leaving your home, which I’ll cover next…

Remember, indulge infrequently and increase your vitamin rich foods intake to really make the most of your fall festivities and merry-making this season.

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