Grounding Is Not Just for Wires

Autumn has arrived, and for many that means the busy back-to-school season that's quickly met with the hustle and bustle of the holidays, collides into one fast moving train.  If you're anything like me, this last part of the year flies by in a wink.  Because of this, it can feel like a time where your out of control schedule is controlling you.  You're pulled in many different directions, and you just want to sit down for a second to catch a break.

One of the beautiful things about nature is that it knows.  It knows how insane this time of year gets and exactly what we need to find our way back to balance.  Is it any wonder that so many grounding foods become available during this season?  And it really is to our benefit to take advantage of them.  By eating foods that are seasonal and local you can achieve balance -- think yin-yang balance.  

People who practice Traditional Chinese medicines and the principles of macrobiotics believe that one of the ways we can find balance is through the food combinations we choose to eat.  So if you are feeling a bit foggy headed and flighty and maybe even forgetful and jittery, you might want to try "grounding" yourself through your food choices.

The heartier vegetables, such as carrots, beets, pumpkins, sweet potatoes and squashes, are harvested in abundance in autumn and store well for use throughout the winter.  Just think about how you feel after eating a stew made from sweet root vegetables, beans and hearty grains.  Grown deeply in the earth and slowly cooked, winter veggies warm us from the inside out.  Hearty stews and soups are among the most popular foods this season.  We crave to be nourished deeply.  We crave more substantial meals at this time of year.  We crave to be grounded.  Don't pass up these delicious autumn foods that are beneficial to us in many ways.  

 Here are a few of my favorite grounding foods:

 Pumpkin and Squash

These are two traditional autumn foods, but they’re also exactly what we should be eating to ground ourselves. When you want some sweetness in your meal, these foods are the ideal way to achieve that and a much better alternative to chemical-laden artificially sweetened items. So, use pumpkin not just for making a jack-o-lantern, but to create a healthy soup or stew.  You will feel oh so healthy and grounded while enjoying a delicious pumpkin dish.  And enjoy the variety of squash found in markets -- butternut, acorn, spaghetti.  

Root Vegetables

Vegetables that fall into this category are sweet potatoes, beets, carrots, turnips, garlic, and ginger. They add some great flavor to your meal and will make you feel rooted and grounded.  Interesting how that works, right?  Foods that grow as roots in the ground are naturally rooting and grounding to us.  Nature is amazing.  Can't you just see a hearty vegetable soup cooking slowly over the course of the day?  What could be better?

Add on the Proteins

Finding healthy, high-quality protein sources will be of benefit to you this time of year.  Proteins that come from high-quality foods give you the nutrients you need to build strong muscle while also feeling more grounded. Are there any plant-based proteins you have meant to experiment with in the kitchen?  Now is a perfect time to be adventurous and try something new.

Aside from eating foods that naturally ground you, there are other techniques you can use to help you feel grounded:

Being in nature has a natural grounding effect -- so take a walk outside as often as possible to breathe in the crisp air and enjoy the colorful scenery. 

Breathing exercises can also help.  Focus on your breathing throughout the day and take note if you're breathing freely and deeply or holding your breath often.  When you notice you're holding your breath, take a moment to practice a short breathing exercise.  My favorite breathing exercise is Dr. Weil's 4-7-8 .

So while the season may feel like it is flying by, you have it in your power to follow nature's lead and slow your life down, connect to the present and find balance.   

                                                   In Health and Balance




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