Eating According to the Seasons
Psalms 104 is one of my favorite Psalms. It is a spiritual song believed to be penned by David, expressing the deep dependence that all of creation has for God. It also speaks of the great interdependence between humans, animals, earth, plant life and oceans. We are all divinely connected and cannot exist without one another. Humans are part of the holistic entity and innately move with the rhythms and cycles of the earth. Our physiological and psychological responses are influenced directly and indirectly by the Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter seasons.
As the seasons change which are external, patterns of various sicknesses and diseases also arise within our bodies internally. Individuals are more prone to heat stroke and Lyme’s disease during the summer months, and as we transition into colder temperatures during the winter, more individuals are susceptible to catching the pneumonia or the flu virus. One of the chief proactive measures we can take to prevent disease and maintain good health is by eating different foods according to the seasons. When we consume foods that are similar in nature to the external environment, we remain in balance with the environment and adapt better to seasonal changes to stay healthy.
What Are the Best Foods to Each for Each Season?
Spring represents a time of growth, renewal and new birth. In like manner, our bodies also need to be replenished and renewed with healing foods. Examples of recommended foods for the spring include onions, leeks, mustard greens, yams, wheat, dates, cilantro, mushrooms and spinach. Whole, unprocessed foods such as fresh green and leafy vegetables should also be included in meals and sprouts from seeds are also valuable. Increasing these foods helps to keep the liver functioning at optimal levels to facilitate ongoing detoxification of the blood stream, keeping the body healthy and strong.
Exposure to increased levels of sunshine and outdoor activities invigorates the blood and creates higher levels of energy within the body. To keep the body balanced and to prevent overheating, consume healing foods to keep the body cool and balanced such as cucumber, watermelon, strawberries, tomatoes, bean sprouts, lettuce and fish to include salmon, albacore tuna and rainbow trout. Steamed vegetables and cooked whole foods ensure that the digestive system works more effectively.
The changing color of leaves falling from the trees reminds us that our bodies, minds and nature are always developing. During this time, animals prepare for winter by storing food and creating warm spaces to hibernate. Just as creation makes special preparations, we too, must prepare our bodies for harsher winter days. Consuming the right foods is imperative to ensuring that the body adjusts to the changing seasons. Some of the common health challenges individuals face during the Fall months are drier skin, poor blood circulation, weakened immune system and depression. Focusing on healing foods that promote the production of bodily fluids to lubricate our internal and external skin organ’s is essential to staying well. Beneficial foods for this season are nuts or seeds, pears, onions, ginger root, lotus root, pumpkin and honey.
During the winter, all of creation slows down and conserves energy. During this season, we conserve energy as our bodies gravitate towards building strength to prepare for Spring. Meals during the winter should include appropriate fats and high protein foods. Foods such range free eggs, grass fed beef, chicken, lamb, duck, yams, dates, nuts, shiitake and maitake mushrooms, leeks and healthy oils such olive, coconut and grapeseed should be consumed. Feeding your heart with healing energy foods keeps the blood healthy and flowing freely. Heart healthy foods include apricots, asparagus, celery, coffee, herbal tea, grapefruit, lettuce, radish leaves, kale and Apple Cider Vinegar with the mother.
There is a divine connection between our food, the environment and our bodies. Eating according to the seasons is a very basic and simple principle that helps to keep the body balanced, healed and in harmony with God’s creation. Eating in season also suggests that we eat food that is locally-grown. One of the major concerns about the modern-day diet is that food can be genetically engineered and grown in farm factories, making food that is out of season available all year long. In addition to being grown genetically, food may also be chemically treated instead of growing naturally. Organic, Non-GMO locally grown food is the best and most nutritious food choice for every season.
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He makes grass grow for the cattle, and plants for people to cultivate—bringing forth food from the earth: wine that gladdens human hearts, oil to make their faces shine, and bread that sustains their hearts.