Fall Equinox: prepare your mind and body for the new season

The change between the summer and the fall is an annual reminder to enjoy your time outside, stock up on the beautiful sunshine filled days and fresh air, and enjoy seasonal foods and holidays with family and friends. The changes between seasons can bring its own highs and lows. Wednesday, September 22 is the fall equinox, or the first day of fall. It is a great time to take care of your mind and body in spirited ways, while fully enjoying the things nature brings to us during this time of year. 

Do Autumn Gardening

Spring is not the only time to plant in your garden! Fall is also an amazing time to plant with warm soil, cool temperatures, rainfall, and shorter bright days. Proven Winners says, “Fall is the best time to plant spring flowering bulbs like tulips, daffodils, crocuses, and a wide variety of others you’ll find at your local garden center this time of year.” It is also a great time to cut your perennials back and enjoy the fresh air spending time in your garden. Gardening can be an excellent cardiovascular workout, which is great for everyone with diabetes, type 1 or type 2, because heart disease is one of the most common diabetic complications. 

Create Fall Crafts

Whether you make traditional crafts such as fall wreaths, garlands, pomander balls or pumpkin carvings, there are so many ways to get creative and feel in the spirit of fall! Knitting is an excellent crafting idea for any season but especially fall with proven benefits for type 2’s. 

You can make your own fall accessories or gifts as the cooler weather approaches. While you’re knitting, enjoy it knowing that there are many health benefits associated with this craft! Your brain and hands are forced to work together to create something wonderful. Some of the benefits associated with knitting include: Lowered blood pressure, reduced depression and anxiety, slowed onset of dementia, distraction from chronic pain, increased sense of wellbeing, and reduced loneliness and isolation.  Many say that knitting has the same properties and benefits of meditation~ pass the yarn! If you’ve never tried it before, here is a great article on how to get started

Get Hiking

Fall is the perfect time to get outside and enjoy the beautiful weather while looking for fall wildlife and admiring the changes in the landscape. Hiking is also highly beneficial for people of all ages and for people with type 2 diabetes. 

An article from Piedmont Medical highlights some of the reasons hiking is so great for us:

  • Going up and down hills gets the heart pumping, creating a great cardio workout.
  • Like most cardio exercises, hiking helps reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and even some cancers.
  • Hiking is a weight-bearing exercise, which builds muscle mass and helps prevent osteoporosis.
  • Hiking can help you manage your weight.
  • It is a joint-friendly form of exercise that can keep arthritis sufferers more limber and mobile.
  • Being outside in the sunshine provides the body with vitamin D.
  • For those with type 2 diabetes, hiking can possibly reduce, or even eliminate, your need for insulin. Talk with your doctor about how exercise may reduce your need for medication.
  • Hiking offers psychological benefits, often contributing to a feeling of relaxation and enhanced well-being.

Make sure you plan out your hiking trails before hand packing the materials you need to enjoy the hike safely such as extra water, wearing layers, packing healthy snacks and any necessary medications. Monitor your blood sugar and routinely check your feet to ensure there are no injuries along the way.

Enjoy Autumn Snacks

Every season is known for its respective fruits, vegetables and other dishes. Fall might have the most delicious and decadent treats of all! Here are three type 2 approved fall themed snacks to get into the fall spirit! 

Caramel Apple Flowers - Turn your ordinary apples into a baked work of edible art with this recipe! Easier than they look, enjoy these beautiful and tasty creations in moderation, knowing that they are a great alternative to sugar and high calorie desserts. 

Pumpkin Cookies - These festive alternatives to sugar packed cookies only have 3.1 net carbs per cookie, which makes them a great option for anyone sticking to a low carb diet. Enjoy them with your family. Find the recipe here.

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds - Always save your pumpkin seeds and roast them for a delicious and healthy snack! Animal studies have shown that pumpkin, pumpkin seeds, pumpkin seed powder and pumpkin juice can reduce blood sugar. 

  1. Cut pumpkin, scrape out seeds, rinse
  2. Boil pumpkin seeds in salted water for 10 minutes
  3. Bake seeds in a 400°F oven until browned, bake on the top rack until the seeds begin to brown, 5-20 minutes, depending on the size of the seeds.

When you’re done, you can decorate your pumpkin with ribbons, permanent markers or paint for a festive centerpiece or beautiful fall decorations for your outdoor spaces.

We welcome you to a new season and wish you a fun filled, and healthy autumn.  Enjoy seasonal articles, tips and recipes all autumn long by joining our online community, Winning Type 2 Diabetes Together. Together, we can maintain our healthy lifestyles.