Fall is the season for harvesting food, but have you ever thought about “harvesting a healthy lifestyle? Our health is determined by the choices we make. These choices result in what we harvest or reap in relation to our health. Therefore, we could say that harvesting food goes hand-in-hand with harvesting health.  

Working on your health is particularly important. Since we are in the season of harvest, pay attention to the bounty of fresh fruits and vegetables that we receive from the earth. Incorporating them in daily consumption is beneficial. Consuming healthy whole foods along with physical and mental exercise enables a stable harvest of health. 

  • Pay attention to the choices you make. 
  • Identify any triggers and unhealthy patterns or practices that hinder harvesting good health.

Take time to figure out what you perceive to be good health and how you can achieve it for yourself. Ask yourself these questions:

  • What is your vision of health?  
  • What is the seed or kernel that you want to grow to achieve optimal health and well-being?
  • What would you like to harvest for good health?  
  • How can you provide the soil or foundation to achieve your health harvest?  
  • What does good health feel like to me?  
  • What is my perception of good health?  
  • What does good health sound like to me?  
  • What will being healthy enable me to do that I cannot do now?  
  • How would a healthy harvest change my life?  

Take some time to think about these questions and how you would answer them. Write responses down.  Read them and begin to establish the seeds (or goals) for harvesting a healthy lifestyle.

Last month we talked about the benefits of the sun. Just as important as it is for us, it’s important for crop growth. Applied to harvesting health, the sun represents positivity and emotional well-being. Just as crops need to be nourished to harvest… your body requires energy from a well-balanced diet. 

Tips for harvesting a healthy lifestyle:

  • Act like you are training for a race to ensure harvesting a healthy lifestyle. Focus on eating the right foods. 
  • Get enough rest. 
  • Make sure you engage in exercise and enhancing spiritual and emotional well-being.  
  • Buy from a local farm stand or purchase fresh fruits and vegetables at the grocery store.

Eating the right foods requires you to focus on whole foods. Whole foods are obtained directly from the earth. These foods are not processed so there are no chemicals, added sugars, fats, etc. and you can easily purchase whole foods at farmer’s markets. This is one place where you will find fresh locally grown produce, thus ensuring freshness. The best way to get the freshest grown whole foods is to grow them in a home garden.  Fresh fruits and vegetables that aren’t processed have more nutrients and many include antioxidants that are beneficial for your overall health and well-being if you do not have a space for a garden or have access to local farmer’s markets, buy frozen vegetables and fruits at the grocery store. 

Sometimes frozen fruits and vegetables are better than fresh depending on whether the fresh vegetables have had to travel a long distance to get to the store. So, by the time the produce reaches the grocery store you’re actually eating fresh fruits and vegetables that have been traveling for days or even weeks. 

Once fruits and vegetables are picked, they begin to release natural sugars which turn into starch. Therefore, it’s better to freshly pick your own vegetables and process them in the home kitchen. Eating raw vegetables is preferable to eating cooked vegetables because when you cook vegetables you lose some of the nutrients. There are some vegetables such as tomatoes where the nutrients are in greater amounts once you cook them. As a last resort purchase canned vegetables. Canned vegetables have low amounts of nutrients because the nutrients are exposed to heat during the processing stage. The process removes a lot of the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients in that vegetable.  So, it’s always best, when possible, to consume fresh or frozen whole fruits and vegetables. 

Our next blog will cover exercise and focusing on emotional and spiritual well-being. I would love to know how you are harvesting a healthy lifestyle this Fall. Email me or leave a comment below. Share your tips for how to harvest a healthy lifestyle!