Inner Reflections
October 19, 2021

5 Tips to Stay Healthy in FALL

Now that summer is gone, and fall is here, things begin to shift and change within our external environment. Sometimes these changes can throw us out of balance causing us to get sick. In this podcast I’m going to share with you 5 tips to stay healthy in the season of fall.

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[The following is the full transcript of this episode of “Dare to Awaken Podcast.”]

Welcome to episode number 15 of the Dare to Awaken podcast, “Five Tips to Stay Healthy Through This Season of Fall.” This is Travis Eliot, and thank you so much for joining me. A lot of what I’m going to share with you today is from the wisdom of Ayurvedic medicine. Years ago, I became a certified Ayurveda practitioner. To this day, I try to live by these principles because Ayurveda is all about working with the natural laws and the natural rhythms of nature. Because when we do that, when the individual rhythm is in alignment or in harmony with the outer rhythm, then we’re going to find that optimal state of health and balance. Ayurveda, if you’re unfamiliar, is about 5,000 years old. It comes from India, and it’s known as the sister science to yoga. It means the science of life.

All right. So let’s go ahead and jump into our first tip here which is, why you should never drink cold beverages especially in the season of fall. So in summer, you can get away with this a little bit more by drinking iced-cold beverages because the outer environment is hot. And if you’re a Pitta person where you have a lot of fire within the body, then it’s probably not going to cause a great imbalance. But as we move into the season of fall, and things become more cold and cool and sometimes windy, we want to oppose the condition. Opposing the condition is a common theme within Ayurvedic medicine. I love it. It’s very simple, but also very profound. So for example, if it’s really cold outside, we want to oppose that condition by bringing things into our body that are warm to balance out that external coolness. So instead of drinking cold beverages, we want to shift into warm teas, warm liquids. Ginger tea is great. Ginger tea is great for the digestive system. It’s also great for the respiratory system. You could also do a warm apple cider. There’s great superfood, mushroom teas like Chaga, or Lion’s Mane, or Cordyceps, you can sip on through the day as well. And what this will do is it will support your Agni. Agni is the digestive fire within the body. And when our digestive fire is robust, then our health and vitality is also strong and robust as well. Whereas those cold beverages, that’s going to put a dampened effect on that Agnian fire which we want to avoid because that can lead to colds, congestion, and other illnesses that are very common in that season of winter and fall.

Number two. Why you also need to avoid certain foods in the fall. So similar to avoiding cold beverages, we also want to avoid raw foods, things like maybe cold salads which maybe we are eating in the summertime and that works. But if we continue that same habit in the season of fall, we may start to notice that it’s not working as well for our body and our health. Especially if we are very sensitive and attuned to the impact that these foods and these liquids have within our body. So instead of eating the raw foods and the cold salads, start to eat lightly steamed veggies, warm, cooked whole grains like basmati rice, quinoa, millet. For breakfast, you can do a warm oatmeal or even a breakfast quinoa or a brown rice cereal. And all of this, again, is going to work with supporting that Agni and that digestive fire so that your body can assimilate the nutrients you’re putting into your body, and it can also burn away those built-up toxins.

Number three. Why you need to avoid staying up too late in fall. So according to Ayurveda, the ideal time for most adults to go to bed in the season of fall is 10:00 PM. Maybe in the summertime, you’re staying up later because the days are longer, and there’s a lot to do, and we want to really milk the most out of daylight as possible. And then maybe we out to a dinner or maybe we go out to a party, and we’re staying up until 11:00 or midnight. But as those days begin to shrink and those nights begin to expand especially after we move beyond daylight savings time, where it may get dark around 5:00 PM depending on where in the world that you live, we want to go with the flow of that. If you observe yourself, you may start to notice an impulse, a pull where you want to start to withdraw a little bit, almost like a bear that needs to hibernate inside of a cave. We see that within the animal kingdom. If again, we’re attuned to how we’re feeling, we see that also within the human kingdom as well.

So allow yourself to cozy up indoors. Allow yourself to go indoors and also to go inward. So this may be the perfect time to recommit or to start a meditation practice where you’re not only going indoors, but you’re going inward. You’re going inside of yourself because we need to find balance. Spring and summer is really about going out. It’s about going outward. It’s about more of a yang energy. Whereas fall and winter are more of a yin energy. It’s about going within. And that’s an important step within these rhythms because if we’re always going out, out, out, out, out, then inevitably, what we do is we exhaust ourselves. We deplete ourselves. But by going inward, we build up our reserves; we restore ourselves; we renew our bodies and our minds and our hearts and our spirits. And there’s nothing like meditation as well to help really, really amplify and augment that as well. So try and get in bed around 9:00 PM, a good hour before that 10:00 PM mark. My wife and I, we have a rule that says no phones in the bedroom. So we leave our phones in the kitchen drawer. We’re not even bringing those digital devices into our bedroom space. And you can read a good book. You can meditate. And then you slide into sleep. Hopefully, it’s close to 10:00 PM, and then you wake up that following morning around sunrise. And now you’re working with the natural cadence of the season of fall. Beautiful.

Next tip. Why you need to do this breathing exercise before bed. So in addition to reading a good book or maybe doing a little meditation or some yin yoga, some gentle stretching, you can also add a fall-specific pranayama breathing exercise into your regimen. And by the way, you can do this before bed, you can also do this in the morning. You can do this anytime throughout the day as often as you like. So the way this breathing technique goes – I’ll show you a couple of rounds – is it’s a form of alternate nostril breathing. So the way it starts is by sealing your left nostril with your right ring finger, and then what you do is you breathe in through the right nostril. You’re going to inhale for about four seconds. And then at the top of the inhale, you’re going to hold the breath as you close the right nostril with the right thumb, and then you breathe out the left nostril for about four seconds. And then you just repeat that. So inhale through the right nostril, and then exhale out the left nostril. And then you can do that for about two to five minutes. You don’t have to do this for an insane period of time. Just a couple of minutes can have a dramatic effect.

Now the reason why this particular breathing exercise is really, really good for fall is because the right side of the body is the warm, fiery side of the body. It’s connected to that young energy. So you’re bringing that into your body. You’re bringing that into your system. You’re turning the warm dial up, and then you’re breathing out the left side which is more of the cool yin energy so you’re decreasing that. So inhaling the warmth and then releasing the excess cold so that you shift your internal system to oppose the condition of your outer or your external environment.

And then lastly, why when you do a new regimen such as what I’ve just offered you in this podcast, you should do it for 35 days. And this is interesting because a lot of times when we hear about a new regimen or a new diet, we hear that number 30 days or 28 days. But the yogis say 35 days because we have seven tissues in the body and it takes 5 days for what you do today to have an impact within all of those seven tissues. 7 times 5 gets us to 35. So the seven tissues are lymph, blood, muscle, fat, bone, nerve, and reproductive. So if you stop short of the 35 days, then you’re really not impacting those deeper, more subtle tissues in the body.

So I invite you to try this regimen out and to try it for the next 35 days. And if it’s helpful, if you feel a positive impact, keep it going through the season of fall. And then, of course, if you really want to take that to a whole other level, really bring in these yoga practices here on my YouTube channel, the power of yoga, the yin yoga. If you want to level that up, join us at Inner Dimension TV, pick a yoga program where you don’t even have to think about what yoga you’re going to do. You just follow the calendar. And this will ensure that you’re able to move through the season of fall as healthy as possible. Thank you so much for listening. Much health, much wealth, much love. May we dare to awaken.