Fall Food Recommendations
Below are recommended foods for Autumn, which in Asian traditions is also referred to as the season of the Lung.
Autumn is a time for celebrating warm moist odors pouring forth from the kitchen providing a perfect balance for the cooler and drier fall nights and fall harvest. In contrast to the light and cooling foods of summer that help to counterbalance the season of highest heat, autumn begins to initiate that transition into cold weather that makes us eager for a bowl of hot soup or steeped tea.
This increased time in the fall kitchen is also perfect for getting prepared for your winter meal plan. Canning, drying, freezing, and pickling of foods harvested during late summer and early fall are timely activities when nature itself is getting ready for the upcoming months.
Autumn is marked by an increased cooling and drying. Fruits and leaves start to fall from trees as they close up and prepare for the drop in temperature. Watery summer fruits give way to drier carrots, potatoes, and seeds of all kinds. Cooler temperatures are ideal for hearty foods that have little risk of freezing. Eating according to season ensures a varied diet and helps out the local farmers while making it easier to consume fresh foods at their peak of ripeness.
Some of the best autumn foods include:
- Root vegetables (including garlic, onion, carrot, potato, sweet potato, yam, and burdock). Above ground squashes and gourds (including winter squash, acorn squash, and pumpkin).
- Sturdy greens, other vegetables and seaweed (includes cos, butter and crisp head lettuces, spinach, kale, turnips, peas, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and green onion).
- Dry, energy-rich nuts and seeds (including walnuts and sunflower seeds) and fruits (apples, cranberries and pears).
- Sour flavored foods (including sourdough bread, sauerkraut, olives, pickles, leeks, aduki beans, salt plums, rosehip tea, vinegar, cheese, lemons, limes, and grapefruit.
- All of the animal foods including fish, chicken, beef, lamb, and venison. Eggs also fit in here, as does dairy.
- Fermented drinks, cultured vegetables and dairy.
Nutrition Associated with Recommended Foods:
The autumn and winter vegetables store up energy and nutrients for winter and when we eat them, they help us do that too.
For those who often have sweet cravings, squash is an excellent food to eat with butter or cream. Totally satisfying and healthy, it is certainly a comfort food. When we get sweet flavor from healthy foods like squash, our bodies don't go through the same shock as eating refined sugary sweets. Also, sweet cravings will diminish when we add cultured foods to our plates along with good quality fats like butter, cream, coconut and olive oil, etc.
Sweet vegetables - Squash and yams are very high in beta carotene. Beta carotene protects us against colds, infections and cancer and helps the body recover from stress. The carotene content along with the sweetness actually increases as it is stored throughout the winter. Our bodies can only convert beta carotene to vitamin A in the presence of bile salts, which is why it’s so important to eat them with fats like butter, Ghee or cream. It also makes the squash taste even better!
Squash and yams are high in fiber and very rich in vitamin B6 and magnesium which are both highly protective against heart disease. They are a good source of iron, potassium, niacin, and vitamin C. Don't peel the skins and buy organic when you can!
Leafy greens have a bounty of benefits. Packed with nutrients and fiber, yet low in calories and low on the glycemic index, you truly get a nutritional boost with leafy greens. Some of the nutrients in leafy green vegetables are:
- Potassium, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, iron, calcium and magnesium.
- Phytochemicals, such as lutein, beta-cryptoxanthin, zeaxanthin, and beta-carotene.
- Carotenoids, flavonoids and other powerful antioxidants that have cancer protective properties.
Sour flavored foods - In Fall, nature contracts and moves its energy inward and downward. Sour flavored foods begin the process of contraction in the body. Note that even small amounts have a strong effect, so be cautious with extremely sour foods.
Cultured foods like kefir, cultured vegetables and naturally fermented beverages contain beneficial bacteria for the colon along with essential enzymes, vitamins and minerals. A healthy colon is vital for detoxifying the body and absorbing nutrients from your food and plays a major role in our immune defense.
Getting the good bacteria from cultured foods not only replenishes the colon, but the fermentation/culturing process enhances the nutrients in the food and predigests it, providing super available nutrition, which is especially important for those with digestion or nutrient absorption problems. Cultured foods also satisfy carbohydrate cravings.
Sweet Potatoes are completely unrelated to the potato (not in the nightshade family) and therefore do not contain nightshade alkaloids, which some people are sensitive to and are a good substitute for regular potatoes. They are considered an anti-diabetic food with a host of nutrients and antioxidants. Great sautéed in butter and coconut oil.
Sautéed Sweet Potatoes
- 2 sticks or more of grass fed butter (or you can use Ghee)
- ½ cup coconut oil
- 4-5 large sweet potatoes, sliced into rounds
- Heat the butter and oil in a medium-sized frying pan. Add the sweet potato rounds and sauté until brown. You may have to sauté more than one pan full and add more butter and oil as you go.
- When they are brown, scoop them into a bowl lined with paper towels to soak up excess fat.
- Viccardi VA. “Get back to your summer roots: crisp and nourishing root vegetables make perfect summer fare.” Natural Health. August 2001.
- Jessica Prentice ~ Book: "Full Moon Feast", Website: www.WiseFoodWays.com
- Worlds Healthiest Foods ~ http://www.whfoods.com
- Nourishing Wisdom ~ http://www.nourishingwisdom.com/
- Body Ecology ~ http://www.bodyecology.com
- NTPtalk.com ~ http://www.ntptalk.com/articles/the-benefits-of-eating-cultured-foods.php
- Paul Pitchford ~ “Healing with Whole Foods”
Article Compiled and Edited by:
Beverly Hartsfield is a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner, the owner of www.earthincommon.com and the administrator of www.ntptalk.com. After suffering from mercury poisoning, chemical sensitivities, allergies, Candida, Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue, she restored her health with nutrition. You can contact her via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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