As summer fades into fall, you may find your mind wandering as it longs for the carefree days of the summer season. Take this opportunity to ground yourself for the new fall season ahead.
Grounding foods is an Ayurvedic belief that all foods offer unique energy properties and in turn affect our bodies in different ways. Mother Nature does a wonderful job at providing foods each season that best support our bodies during that particular time of year, so take a cue from her and stock up on these five fall foods to help get you grounded for the fall season.
Why root vegetables are extra grounding
As the name suggests, root vegetables have roots that extend deep down within the Earth. These roots anchor the plant in place and provide a strong foundation for their growth within the ground.
Allison Koch, Board Certified Sports Dietitian, says, “Root vegetables absorb water and nutrients that in turn, feed the rest of the plant—making them dietary powerhouses for us.”
During the fall season, a diet teeming with root vegetables can potentially help us feel more connected to ourselves and Mother Nature. Here are some root vegetables that can help you feel more focused and grounded for the fall season ahead.
Orange and yellow fruits and vegetables get their color from the antioxidants alpha- and beta-carotene, which means root vegetables like carrots are loaded with beneficial properties.
Koch elaborates, “Alpha- and beta-carotene are the inactive form of vitamin A found in plants. Once consumed, these compounds are converted to the active form in your body. Vitamin A is important as it helps protect our eyes from night blindness and may help slow age-related decline in eyesight. Adequate intake from food sources may also reduce your risk of certain types of cancer and supports your immune system—helping you fight off that fall cold.”
Parsnips are another root vegetable with a subtly sweet taste. As it is a white vegetable, parsnips contain various compounds that offer a wide range of health properties.
According to Harvard Health, “One cup of parsnips provides about a quarter of your daily fiber, vitamin C, and vitamin K. They also deliver potassium, magnesium, and vitamin E and B, as well as calcium and other minerals.”
One of my favorite ways to use parsnips is to make a homemade batch of roasted parsnip fries for all of those fall football weekends. It’s easy. Simply wash and slice parsnips into long strips then toss them in avocado oil with a sprinkle of Pink Himalayan Salt. Roast at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until parsnips are soft and tender to the touch.
Tip: Be careful not to roast parsnips too long as the natural sugars in the parsnips will cause them to burn quickly if cooked at too high of a temperature.
Just like carrots, pumpkins contain antioxidants alpha- and beta-carotene, plus, they are super delicious. When stored properly, pumpkins can keep for up to two months; just be sure to store them in a cool, dark place.
Looking for another way to repurpose your pumpkin? Try these pumpkin themed recipes:
Squash is incredibly versatile and is super simple to prepare. Whether you enjoy acorn squash, butternut squash or spaghetti squash, squash is a culinary staple of the fall season. If you have a sweet tooth, you can even roast an acorn squash topped with sweet spices like cardamom or cinnamon for a festive fall sweet treat.
Looking for some more recipe inspiration? Try some of these recommended by Koch:
#5 Sweet potatoes
Sweet potatoes are, well, sweet, which is why they are a great vegetable to eat if you have a hankering for something sweet. One medium baked sweet potato provides your daily dose of Vitamin A and also provides significant amounts of Vitamin B and C as well as calcium, iron and potassium. In fact, sweet potatoes are richer than bananas in potassium. Perfect for a post workout meal, try this sweet potato smoothie recipe. You can even use them to create homemade cookies and enchiladas. Yum!