Fall Harvest


BY: Dr. Kim Leis-Keeling

As much as I’m sad to see summer disappear, I do love the beauty and aroma of fall. One of my favorite indulgence of the season is the fall harvest of fruits and vegetables. My children would disagree since they are forced to spend a day helping me cut corn off 100 ears of sweet corn to freeze and pulling grapes for homemade grape juice. These are very messy productions but the kids always love the yummy tastes of summer during the cold winter months. As you enjoy the flavors of fall, chew on these healthy aspects of your food.

APPLES: Who doesn’t love a fresh apple crisp or apple pie? Apples are full of nutrients including 4 grams of fiber in each, vitamin C and potassium. They contain great antioxidants including quercetin which is anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-cancer and anti-depressive effects. They also contain catechins, similar to green tea, which help with brain and muscle function.

GRAPES: One of the key nutrients that make grapes so beneficial is Resveratrol. This is a very powerful antioxidant that is anti-inflammatory and has been shown to slow and prevent the growth of some tumors. Grapes also contain quercetin, fiber and potassium.

PEARS: While containing a fair amount vitamin C, anti-oxidants and flavonoids, pears biggest nutrient punch comes from its fiber content. One pear contains 6 grams of fiber. We should all aim to get 30 grams of fiber each day. Including one pear in your daily nutrition is a great way to reach that goal.

SWEET POTATOES: One cup of sweet potato boasts 3 grams of plant based protein, 4 grams of fiber and 6 times our RDA for beta-carotene (vitamin A), B5 and B6. They are also rich in magnesium, potassium and manganese – which all help keep our bones and heart healthy.

BUTTERNUT SQUASH & PUMPKINS: Similar to sweet potatoes, these are rich in fiber and vitamin A. One serving contains half your RDA for vitamin C, it also contains folate, magnesium, manganese and potassium. All these nutrients make a perfect combination to help you lower blood pressure. Enjoy that warm bowl of butternut squash soup and pumpkin pie!

BRUSSEL SPOUTS & CABBAGE: Cabbage has the highest amount of powerful antioxidants found in the cruciferous vegetables. Both are also rich in vitamin K which aids in bone health and preventing Alzheimer’s disease. It is also a good source of the B vitamins thiamine, pyridoxine, pantothenic acid and folate – all which keep our nerves healthy and help give us energy.

Enjoy the flavors of fall while your body reaps the nutrient benefits. As always, if you have questions about this article please feel free to contact me at the Sports & Spinal Wellness Center at 518-869-3415. Follow us on Facebook or visit our website at www.sportsandspinalwellness.com



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