I bet you didn’t even think there were healthy fall facts! Let me share some healthy things about the fall.
Everyone knows there are health benefits to the summer months because of the sunshine and all the fresh produce. But did you know there are also healthy benefits of fall weather, as well? Here are a few reasons why experts agree the autumn weather has healthy benefits, too.
Cooler weather brings about higher levels of the hormone norepinephrine, or noradrenaline, in your body. Norepinephrine is associated with pain suppression as well as the fight or flight reflex which provides much needed energy during times of stress. My arthritis could use some pain suppression!
You’ll also recognize the benefit of having fewer insects in the cooler temperatures. Mosquitoes, which we are plagued with here in Alaska will be dying out and you won’t have to deal with flies as often. I remember ticks being a huge problem at times and I use to be so happy when the weather would cool down and not have to worry about them as much. With fewer insects, you can actually enjoy being outdoors without the use of harsh chemical sprays to keep them away.
Did you know that people who work outdoors in the cooler temperatures have more brown fat than those who work indoors? What difference does it make what color fat is, you ask? Brown fat produces heat and, therefore, burns more calories than other fat. So, while you’re enjoying a brisk walk or playing outdoor games with the family, take comfort in knowing you’re using the brown fat and burning more calories!
Being outdoors in the cooler weather can also help bring mental clarity. There is something special about the crisp air of a fall morning. It wakes you up, invigorates you and makes you feel like you can take on the world. I’m not an early morning person so this is one I have to work on! Remember for us up here in the far north it doesn’t get light until 10AM. So it is harder to use the early morning hours to exercise outdoors. But those of you who do, you’ll have the benefit of burning calories and clearing your mind to help you have a great day!
There are fewer allergens in the fall because there are fewer plants blooming. Most fall allergies are related to ragweed, pollen or mold. In most cases these can be treated with over-the-counter medications and shouldn’t keep you from spending time outdoors.
You will also notice the array of fruits and vegetables that are available in the fall. Think about the different varieties of apples that you may not find during other times of the year. Plus the fact that they are so fresh! You will also find carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, beets, pumpkins and seeds of all kinds available at either the farmer’s market or grocery store. It makes sense to stock up on root vegetables for making wonderful stews and soups.
There are plenty of reasons to enjoy the autumn months. There are fewer bugs to contend with, the weather is considerably cooler and there is a wide variety of great fall foods.