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Fall in Love with Fall and Winter Foods

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By Michelle Mitchum, MPH, HHP

It’s no secret, that fall has arrived. It is not ‘around the corner’, it is not ‘on the way’. Fall is HERE, and accompanying the cooler temperatures, and earth tones of the season, are a plethora of savory flavors. The colors of the foods of the season are just as beautiful in colors and textures, and intricate as the pallet of foliage, as it changes from lush green to gorgeous hues of yellow, orange and golden brown.

Fall and winter foods can be exciting. There are the staple foods of the season, such as apple, butternut squash, pumpkin, sweet potatoes and yams. These foods are grounding, as they provide energy and sustenance to support your body during months of low physical activity and lower external temperatures. These foods contain protein, fiber, glucose and minerals, including sodium and potassium, creating the perfect environment for energy sustainability and cell support.

The flavors of fall foods are rich and decadent, and should be experienced with care and appreciation. These foods can be prepared in many different ways, for and example – pumpkin and butternut squash can be prepared as a savory soup or sweet pastry/pie. 

The activities around gathering and preparing fall foods also provide great opportunities to participate in outdoor exercise. One of the more popular activities includes apple/pumpkin picking. Crisp temperatures + beautiful foliage + delicious food = healthy fun for the whole family.

Here is an interesting twist on preparation of some of the seasons’ popular dishes.

Pumpkin Soup


3  cups of water

½ teaspoon crushed garlic

pinch of salt

1 teaspoon of fresh black pepper

½ diced small ginger root

3 cups of cubed steamed pumpkin

1 peeled white potato

¼ cup of chopped cilantro


1. Place potato, water, garlic, salt and onions in covered pot and boil for 20 minutes, or until potato is cooked thoroughly

2. Pour mixture in blender with pumpkin, ginger and black pepper in blender and puree until smooth

3. Pour into serving bowl and garnish with cilantro.

Roasted Beet Root Salad


4 small beets

½ cup of distilled white vinegar

2 teaspoons of salt

1 teaspoon of fresh rosemary

2 teaspoons of olive oil

½ cup of lime juice

3 cups of water

2 teaspoons of crushed garlic


1. Place beets, vinegar, garlic, salt, in bowl and lets sit for 10 hours, (or until beets become soft and translucent)

2. Remove beets from the solution, and place in serving bowl

3. Pour lime juice and olive oil into bowl and mix lightly until all beets are covered

4. Garnish with fresh rosemary and place in refrigerator for 2 hours then serve

These are a few quick and tasty recipes that I enjoy!

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