Back To School: The Best Autumn Fruits List For Bulletproof Immunity
We all enjoyed tanning, swimming, and all the other perks of the sunny summer days. However, they are slowly fading away and giving their place to the autumn. Time to enjoy the rhapsody of colours and smells that come with it! This part of the year brings with it the abundance of healthy foods to help keep the mood uplifted and the immunity system boosted. In this article, we present you the best autumn fruits list and share some ideas for quick immunity-boosting meals.
Whether you’re back to school, back to work, or just looking for some healthy inspiration — look no further. Many amazing fruits are now in season. They will strengthen your immune system, arm you with essential nutrients, and ensure optimal hydration. You may be thinking: “Most foods are available year-round. Why should I bother looking what’sin season?” Here’s why:
✓ Locally produced seasonal fruits are fresh and rich in nutrients
✓ They are cheaper and usually less sprayed
✓ You are supporting your local economy
✓ You are reducing the carbon footprint of imported foods (transportation, distribution, etc.)
Now, let’s dive in and give you 7 reasons to love this autumn:
Did you know that figs give fruits two times per year? Their second season begins just about now and lasts till October. Figs abound with healthy fibre that will keep you full and regulate your digestion. They also provide plenty of calcium, which is crucial for bone health. American College of Nutrition analyzed the nutritional profile of figs and named them “a superior source of antioxidants.” (1) Dried figs are a convenient healthy snack, but you should save them for other parts of the year. Use this season to get creative with fresh figs recipes or just snack on this delicious autumn fruit.
Apples serve as a great example of why you should opt for seasonal produce. They belong to the “dirty dozen” — the foods most contaminated with pesticides. In this part of the year, you can find organic apples at a decent price or enjoy the wild varieties. They are bursting with vitamin C, potassium, and antioxidants. A special type of fibre called pectin feeds the gut probiotics, the gatekeepers of your immunity. Apple flavonoids protect against oxidative damage and reduce your risk of heart disease. According to the British Medical Journal, “an apple a day” can greatly reduce cardiovascular mortality in older adults. (2) Turns out that age-old saying has a strong scientific background. Raw apple is a perfect school/office snack while baked apples with some walnuts and cinnamon make for a delicious healthy treat.
No more frustrations due to high prices and low quality — this delicious fruit is finally in season! Pomegranate is rich in vitamin C and anthocyanins, a potent ‘antioxidant cocktail’. According to research, pomegranate juice has three times more antioxidants than green tea or red wine (3). It also contains tannins such as ellagic acid, which protect your body from pathogens and prevent respiratory infections (4). Enrich your children’s school recess or a long boring day at work with some fresh pomegranate juice. Who said healthy food is dull and tasteless? You can also eat whole pomegranates to get healthy fats from the seeds. Here’s the best way to peel it:
Super-tasty and loaded with fibre, pear is guaranteed to satisfy your sweet tooth and become your favourite filling snack. Besides, it will hydrate your body and deliver an array of vitamins and minerals. A medium-size pear packs 5.5g of healthy soluble fibre and 206 mg of potassium. (5) Pears could greatly improve the nutritional value of school snacks, given that most children in the western world, in general, don’t eat enough fibre. A diet rich in fibre can prevent heart disease, diabetes, and digestive disorders. (6) Delicious pear recipes rank it high on the best autumn fruits list and make the rainy days much more enjoyable.
Of countless varieties, Mediterranean, Asian or Japanese persimmon (Diospyros kaki) gained the biggest fame for its amazing taste and powerful health benefits. It contains a wide range of beneficial phytonutrients. An average Japanese persimmon delivers 55% of your daily needs for vitamin A, which protects your immunity, skin health, and vision (7). Vitamin C, carotenoids, and flavonoids offer a strong protection against oxidative stress and cell damage. Together with gallic acid and other tannins, they make persimmon one of the best fruits for heart health. One study compared the nutritional profiles of persimmons and apples and their role in heart disease prevention. The researchers concluded: “The relatively high contents of dietary fibres, total and major phenolics, main minerals, and trace elements make persimmon preferable for an antiatherosclerotic diet.” (8) Now you have great chances to find fresh organic persimmons and enjoy them whole (with peels) for the optimal nutrition. If they are still tart, let them ripen at room temperature for a couple of days.
Autumn brings a rainbow of colours from fruits, veggies, and falling leaves. Different varieties of grapes contribute to this vivid landscape. They come handy as a finger food or snack for school, office, or a picnic in nature. Have you tried snacking on grapes and walnuts yet? Did you know? Worldwide annual wine production has reached 7.2 trillion gallons. Farmers around the world grow 72 million tons of grapes to meet the growing demand for wine. (9) Grapes will safeguard your immunity and prepare you for the seasonal change. Like other fruits, they contain plenty of vitamins, minerals, water, and healthy fibre. However, one phytonutrient separates red grapes from the crowd: resveratrol.
Resveratrol belongs to a group of compounds called phytoalexins. It has been studied extensively due to its superb antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. A 2011 review confirmed that resveratrol offers protection against cancer, heart disease, and ageing. (10) Grape skin has the highest concentration of resveratrol while seeds contain healthy unsaturated fatty acids. Make sure to eat them whole and reap their full benefits.
If you think all berries will be gone with the summer, think twice. Cranberry season lasts from late August till October and this is your perfect time to try them fresh. Unlike dried ones, fresh cranberries contain live enzymes and lots of water. Their tart taste can refresh you and chase off the autumn blues. Cranberries are bursting with vitamin C, manganese, vitamin K, and copper. The unique blend of anthocyanins gives them a red colour and a strong immunity-boosting action. A study published in the Nutrition Journal found that cranberry juice stimulates our T-cells and helps them fight viral infection. Thus, it can greatly reduce the symptoms of a common cold. (11)
Teenage girls and older women often suffer from recurrent urinary tract infections (UTIs). Cranberries may offer a natural solution to this health issue, even when antibiotics fail. (12) Whether fresh or dried, cranberries make for a perfect snack and fit into dozens of cool recipes.
More Autumn Foods For Healthy Snacks And Dishes
✓ Winter squash: Don’t let the name fool you, their season has already begun. Butternut, acorn, spaghetti, pumpkin… you choose! They are nutritious, rich in fibre, and extremely versatile.
✓ Root veggies and tubers: Carrots and beetroot are excellent for juicing, cooking, and baking. Together with celery and parsnip, they give delicious vegetable soups.
✓ Walnuts: Stores have them year-round, but early autumn is their fruiting season. Their brain-friendly fats make them a perfect school snack.
✓ Cruciferous vegetables: Cabbage, kale, broccoli, cauliflower… they guarantee a bulletproof immunity and an autumn without colds. If your kids don’t like them, try blending them into a creamy soup.
School gatherings, job meetings, colder weather, and frequent rains — autumn brings some tough challenges to your immune system. But it also brings healthy delicious fruits to help you maintain your peak performance. Use this list of autumn fruits and other healthy foods to strengthen and hydrate your body. Prepare simple snacks and meals that fit your busy schedule. They will support your immunity and help you enjoy this season to the fullest. What is your favourite autumn fruit? Would you like to share a recipe with others? See you in the comment section!
Thank you for reading — have a healthy and cheerful autumn!