5 Simple, Effective Ways for Business Owners to Lower Stress Levels 

At the end of the day, stress and business ownership go hand in hand. Entrepreneurs know this, and they understand that’s what they’re signing up for when they start their own company. However, it’s easy for that stress to become too intense or too persistent. When this happens, you’re at risk for a myriad of health issues, not to mention serious burnout.  


The Olive Leaf is dedicated to helping people find wellness solutions that bring health and happiness. The following habits are shockingly effective when it comes to managing stress. Read on for stress-busting inspiration:  


  1. Eat Right 


One of the simplest ways you can reduce stress is to make sure your body has the vitamins and nutrients it needs to thrive. When we’re well-nourished, our bodies produce fewer stress hormones and have an easier time regulating emotions. There’s a whole world of approaches to meeting your nutritional goals out there, so try some and see what works for you. At the end of the day, if you’re getting protein, healthy fats, and plenty of fruits and veggies, odds are you’re doing right by your body.  


If you have trouble sticking with a good nutritional plan, don’t be afraid to give yourself shortcuts. There’s nothing wrong with getting vitamins and nutrients through dietary supplements, for example, as long as they’re legitimate, well-reviewed, and doctor-approved. You can also use meal-prep techniques such as premade smoothie bags to make snacks and mealtimes easier. Little steps that make your day-to-day nutrition goals easier always pay off.  


  1. Exercise Daily 


Exercise is one of the single most effective tools when it comes to reducing stress and anxiety. Our bodies are meant to move, but in our ever-more sedentary lives, opportunities for movement are few and far between. That’s why it’s so important to make an active effort to exercise every day. In doing so, we help regulate our energy levels and avoid building up anxious energy by accident.  


The best way to stay active is to work on figuring out what kind of exercise excites you. Think back to when you were a kid: You didn’t run around the playground to burn off energy; you did it because it was fun. Try to tap into that same energy now by trying dance workouts, joining a casual sports team, or even indulging in a throwback to childhood such as skating or hula-hooping.  


  1. Get Enough Rest 


Rest and recovery are exercise’s natural companions, and you must have both in order to achieve wellness. Entrepreneurs have an abundance of drive and passion, but it can sometimes lead them to run themselves into the ground. It’s extremely important to take time to rest, both for physical health and emotional well-being. ZenBusiness even notes that vacation has been shown to be the most effective way to reduce stress.  


  1. Schedule Downtime 


Although getting at least seven hours of sleep a night is a good start, it’s not just bedtime you should be concerned about. It’s also vital to have downtime during your day. If you spend every waking minute focused on work or betterment, you’re going to wear yourself out. Be sure to work in time to engage in a creative hobby or enjoy a leisurely walk.  


  1. Set Specific Goals 


Entrepreneurs, on the whole, tend to be goal-oriented people. You can use that skill in your personal life just as well as you can in your professional one. Come up with specific, achievable goals that will help you develop stress-busting habits. For example, they could be centered on the topics above or on other stress busters such as meditation, reading, or committing to a creative hobby.  


At the end of the day, your goals should be centered on actions you can take, not the results you want to see. Though you can track your results to see what’s working, you can’t guarantee what will or won’t happen when you commit to a specific stress-management tool. By taking specific actions and observing their results, you can figure out how to effectively manage stress, making it easier to take your entrepreneurial goals by storm.  


Photo Credit: Pexels 


Take Better Care of Your Digestive Health

5 Things You Can Do Now to Take Better Care of Your Digestive Health

Digestive health problems, like heartburn, gas, and bloating, are pretty common. But when you are living with these issues, it can feel like your world is ruled by your stomach. Finding a good solution usually means making lifestyle changes that reduce your symptoms and make life more manageable. So, if you struggle with digestive discomfort, try changing your habits to include these stomach-friendly fixes.

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Take a Look at What You Eat

 A lot of digestion problems can be solved by paying closer attention to what you eat. Processed foods and fatty meals can lead to heartburn and bloating, so sticking to a clean diet of whole foods is the best choice for your digestion. If you have a busy schedule, however, shopping for healthy options can be a challenge. One idea is to look into food delivery services in your area to help keep your kitchen stocked with fresh fruits and veggies.

You may also want to include fermented foods like kimchi or sauerkraut on your list to add some gut-healthy probiotics. Keeping your gut healthy is vital for your entire health, because the microbes that live in your gut perform different functions. For example, Akkermansia helps to boost metabolism, Lactobacillus aids the digestive and immune systems, and Bifidobacterium can treat gastrointestinal problems. In order to keep these microbes functioning efficiently, you should definitely pay attention to what you eat.


Be Careful About How You Eat, Too

 When it comes to digestive health, how you eat can be as important as what you eat. While grazing has become a popular weight-loss tactic, this may not be the best option if you have any chronic digestive issues. Grazing can make symptoms worse if you struggle with bloating or keeping your digestive tract in check. But overeating doesn’t help either. When you do eat a big meal, try going for a walk to help calm your tummy down. Getting your body moving can aid digestion, but keep activity gentle immediately after a meal to prevent further upset.


Eliminate Any Problem Foods

 Sometimes digestive health issues may be the result of certain foods you are still including in your diet. Many of these foods are even considered part of a clean, healthy diet, so you may be shocked to hear that they can cause issues for your digestive system. Some common stomach culprits include nuts, seeds, legumes, and even whole grains. Sensitivities to these foods may cause you to bloat, have gas, or experience constipation after consuming them. If you think your diet may be the source of your discomfort, try eliminating potentially problematic foods one at a time, or all together, to see if your symptoms improve. You should aim to eliminate foods for at least three weeks for optimal results.


Use a Journal to Track Symptoms

 Tracking your symptoms is an important step in determining the source of your digestive troubles and can even help your doctor determine if your symptoms are the result of a chronic digestive disorder, like IBS or celiac disease. You can use a journal to track what and when you eat, as well as how you feel afterward, or you can make things even easier with a gut health app. Apps like Bowelle and Cara allow you to track your diet and symptoms on the go, and have your results with you to discuss with your doctor.


Improve Your Nightly Sleep Habits

 This may come as a surprise, but your digestive health is closely connected to how well you sleep at night. Gastrointestinal discomfort disrupts sleep in people who live with IBD, GERD, and frequent heartburn, but a lack of sleep can lead you to eat more foods that make your stomach problems worse. It’s a painful cycle, but you can find relief by using simple tips to help you get better sleep. Set up a regular sleep schedule and use an alarm to make yourself get in bed at the same time each night. You should also be careful what you eat before bed. Avoid anything that’s fatty, spicy, or caffeinated that can make your symptoms worse and keep you from falling asleep.


Making changes to your diet, daily routine, and sleep habits is the simplest way to find relief from common digestive health issues. If these fixes don’t work or if your symptoms become worse, it also may be time to see a doctor. Proper digestion is important for your overall health, so don’t let it become a major problem in your life.



Photo Credit: Pixabay




I heard a message that inspired me to create this template on Thankfulness. Many times we program ourselves through repetitive negative thoughts and slowly over time our personality conforms to these established patterns. This is a sneaky way the enemy comes in to seek, steal and destroy our trust in the Lord. In order to break this cycle we need to set ourselves apart from the pattern in order to reestablish our belief systems within the context of God’s word.

The Bible says in Thessalonians 5:18 “to give thanks in all circumstance; for this is His will in Messiah Yeshua.” The Lord also say’s in Isaiah 41:10 “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” We need to know in our heart of hearts that He is with us, He is for us and not against us even if we do not feel He is there. It is not always easy to make a decision to be Thankful in the midst of tragedy, trials, injustice, or sickness but by the power of choice and by Gods grace, He will give us the power of God to do the will of God. So making a decision to fast negativity is not easy but can be done by making a daily choice and taking action.

For the next 21 days to fast from the following 5 things:

  • Complaining
  • Murmuring
  • Gossip
  • Negative Internal talk
  • Holding offensives against others

And thank God and thank others as much as possible. If you find yourself slipping, which we all do just ask God to help you have a Thankful heart and continue to give thanks for everything positive that He has provided for you.

Take some time outdoors to get outside of yourself and your circumstance and breath deeply, be thankful for the oxygen He has provided, the trees He has created, the sunset and sunrise. Anything that you see that was created by Him for you.

Look at your family (even the ones you cannot stand) and realize they were all created by Him and are connected to you. Work on seeing them as a child through His eyes and not your own. This can be very difficult especially if there is hurt or rejection involved. Search for any positive qualities about this person and be thankful.

Thank Him for the Ruach Hakodesh (the Holy Spirit) which He as given to you as a comforter. Take refuge in this covering which will allow you to release your fears, worries and anxiety. Picture yourself as a child of God enveloped in His eternal embrace just holding you and protecting you from any harm.

Express appreciation for those around you even if its for the smallest things. My daughter Brittany has a wonderful bumper sticker which says “Do Small Things With Great Love” because when you think about it nothing is really small when done in love. By doing so we stir each other to fulfill the will of God in each of our lives.

Remember faith is waiting on God to move not only for yourself, but also for others. He will move, He always does and He always will.
I attend a Messianic temple Beth Hallel in Roswell and as Rabbi Robert once said “When you feel like your at the end of your rope just tie a knot and hold on because the Lord will pull you back up” He is always on time.

Gratitude is a decision of will and it takes work. Abraham Lincoln once said “We can complain that the rose-bush has thorns or rejoice that the thorn-bush has roses.” May you be blessed during the next 21 days of thankfulness and may God deliver you from all fear and anxiety. May he shower you with His Love and Grace abundantly overflowing and provide you with his Shalom in any and all circumstance.

Yours In Health,

Melissa Bennett, ND

Healthy Lifestyle Living Tips to Keep You Feeling Great as Senior

Photo via Unsplash

Understanding your health needs and striving to meet them is an important part of being a senior. Maintaining your health through simple lifestyle choices will minimize age-related decline and help you live a long and happy life. Whether you want to stave off illness, maintain your independence, or wake up feeling good each and every day, here are some great ways you can meet your health goals.


Keep Your Meals Healthy


Eating healthy can be difficult when you’re homebound. Fortunately, technology has made it simple for anyone to stick to healthy meal plans by allowing ingredients and ready-made meals to arrive right at your door. Shop your local grocery store from the comfort of your own home. Or, use meal delivery services to receive ingredients for wholesome meals that only require some simple cooking. Alternatively, bring a smartphone app shopping list with you to the grocery store to ensure you only pick up the healthy foods you intended.


Eating healthy will ensure your organs, muscles, bones, immune system, and brain remain free from health issues and function optimally as you age. You need many essential nutrients to support these functions including fiber, protein, vitamin B12, calcium, magnesium, vitamin D, and omega 3’s. Aim to eat a rainbow of colorful fruits and veggies, as well as plenty of lean protein, to ensure you’re getting all of these nutrients from your diet.


Get More Quality Sleep


Seniors tend to get much less sleep than younger adults, often suffering from higher rates of insomnia and other sleep disorders. However, The National Sleep Foundation explains that most sleep issues experienced by seniors are due to illnesses and the medications used to treat them. This is unfortunate, since getting quality sleep is key to feeling good during the day. If you experience daytime fatigue and have trouble sleeping at night, don’t hesitate to talk to your doctor about how medications or psychological conditions may be affecting your sleep. Doctors will be able to help you pinpoint and address any health issues that may be contributing to your poor sleep, including obstructive sleep apnea or restless leg syndrome.


Exercise Safely


Ensure you make time to exercise every day, striving for a combination of cardio, flexibility, and strength training. Exercise will help you improve flexibility, bone density, and balance to prevent injury from falls. It will also reduce the woes of fatigue, depression, anxiety, and pain. It’s important that you exercise safely so you don’t get hurt. Chair squats and wall push-ups are joint-friendly ways to strengthen both your upper and lower body. If you’re doing yoga for practicing flexibility, keep a chair nearby for support. This will keep you from falling if you lose balance. Another great idea is to head to your local pool to do aquatic exercises for a safe, full-body workout.


Socialize More Often


According to Bethesda Health Group, being social is one of the keys to healthy aging. For one thing, it helps keep your mind sharp and reduces your risk of dementia. Socializing has also been found to stave off depression and stress. To get connected with people, pursue your hobbies and passions within your community. Find out if there are groups you can join where you can participate in activities with others who share your interests. Senior centers are wonderful places for engaging with people while playing mentally stimulating games or setting up group outings.


Stimulate Your Mind with Hobbies


Hobbies have numerous benefits for seniors, from beating boredom to improving cognitive functioning. Try to pick up hobbies that challenge your mental abilities to enhance your memory and problem-solving skills. Learning to speak a new language or play an instrument are fantastic options. Other hobbies such as gardening, knitting and painting are more meditative and perfect options for soothing a stressed mind.


Don’t wait until you feel unhealthy to start making changes to your lifestyle. Being preventive about aging will help you tackle the sources of illness and pain before they become a problem for you. These healthy habits will soon become second nature as you work to maintain your quality of life well into your golden years.

Clean 15 / Dirty Dozen

When I give my health talks across the country I am asked which foods should be purchased organic and which ones are okay to consume without being labeled organic.  The following list contains the dirty dozen and the clean 15.  According to the PDP, 99.5% of samples tested had residues “well below” the EPA’s established tolerances, and 22% had no detectable pesticide residue.  I always recommend washing your fruits and veggies with an organic spray cleaner from the health food store or use a vinegar and water combination.  I also recommend trying to find fruits and veggies which are in season and look for local farmers or farmers markets to purchase from to help your local economy.  

The group identified the following items on its “Dirty Dozen” list of produce with the most pesticide residue:   

  • Strawberries 
  • Spinach 
  • Nectarines 
  • Apples 
  • Grapes 
  • Peaches 
  • Cherries 
  • Pears 
  • Tomatoes 
  • Celery 
  • Potatoes 
  • Sweet Bell Peppers 

Here are the items the EWG identified for its “Clean 15,” which report the least likelihood to contain pesticide residue. 

  • Avocados 
  • Sweet Corn 
  • Pineapples 
  • Cabbages 
  • Onions 
  • Sweet Peas 
  • Papayas 
  • Asparagus 
  • Mangoes 
  • Eggplants 
  • Honeydews 
  • Kiwis 
  • Cantaloupes 
  • Cauliflower 
  • Broccoli 

5 Things Every Senior Can Do To Sleep Well at Night


If we aged like the main character in the movie “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” then our later years would mean sleeping 10-12 hours through the night. Unfortunately, only toddlers and college students are able to sleep that long without interruption. Seniors who have likely spent most of their adult lives sleep-deprived probably don’t want to spend the rest of their lives tossing and turning at night.  

 Adults should be getting between seven and nine hours of sleep nightly, and many of us aren’t meeting that requirement. Here are five things you can do to get a more restful sleep. 

1. Diet and Exercise 

 Let’s examine the link between diet, exercise and sleep. Diet and exercise are important for a good sleep, but sleep is also important for healthy weight management. Sleep regulates moods, energy and brain function. Sleep allows your food to digest while the rest of your body is able to rest. Lack of sleep can also raise your cortisol levels, which can lead to belly fat. Weight gain can then lead to type 2 diabetes. 

 The types of food you eat can make an impact on your sleep. A healthy diet affects your brain activity, thereby affecting your sleep. As a result, your body’s nightly functions are linked to your sleep. You don’t want to go to bed hungry, but you don’t want to go to bed full either. A full stomach still has to digest and digestion interrupts your sleep. Exercise reduces your stress and makes your tired, leading to better sleep. 

2. What You Sleep On 

Your mattress and pillow can mean a solid night of sleep or a restless one. One thing you don’t want to skimp on is a good mattress, whether it’s orthopedic, memory foam, or pillow top. Your pillow matters too, as it controls your neck positioning and posture. Some pillows can be too soft, while others can be too firm. If you’re waking up with a stiff neck on some mornings, then it might be your pillow. Your pillow should provide neck support without making you bend or extend in uncomfortable ways. Invest in a good pillow that feels right for you and remember to replace it when it loses shape. 

3. Lighting 

Lighting affects your circadian rhythm, which tells your body when to sleep and wake up. Blue light from electronic devices can signal the body to stop producing the melatonin that helps you sleep. LED lights can also be glaring, but incandescent bulbs have a soothing effect. Consider changing the lighting in your bedroom to help prepare your body to rest. 

4. Talk to your doctor 

 A medical issue, prescription medication or supplement that you’re taking could be causing insomnia and restless sleep. Speak to your doctor if you’re having problems sleeping. She or he may be able to treat the issue, switch you to a different medication, or offer an alternative solution to the problem. 

If you’re not living near your loved ones, this might be a good time to purchase a senior-friendly tablet to keep long-distance family apprised of your medical issues though email or video chat. Doing so will allow you to contact multiple family members simultaneously when your medical plan changes. 

5. Prepare Your Body and Brain for Sleep   

Besides establishing a nightly routine, there are many ways to prepare for sleep. It goes without saying that you shouldn’t consume stimulants close to bedtime, but as mentioned above, food and drinks in general should be avoided. Drinking water too close to bedtime could interrupt your sleep for bathroom breaks. Set the thermostat at a comfortable level so you’re not waking up uncomfortably hot or cold during the night. Put away that tablet, television and other mobile devices before bedtime so your body can produce melatonin without the interference of blue light. Avoid work or mental activity close to bedtime so your brain isn’t on overdrive when you’re trying to shut it off. Think relaxing thoughts and take deep breaths.

Let your senior years be your most peaceful and stress-free. You’ve suffered through so many years of inadequate sleep that now is the time to catch up. You’ll be able to enjoy your waking hours more if your slumber is complete. 


Photo Credit: Pixabay

Benefits of Alkaline Water (X20) and FocusUP Sample Pack

X2O Alkaline water sachet (Xooma Worldwide)

The alkaline water sachet actually comes directly from a coral reef which is located 300 feet below the ocean and contains 70 trace minerals which are so beneficial to our health.  The coral reef has the same mineral composition as our bones which is amazing and probably why I no longer have osteopenia which I had after finishing 2 years of chemo and radiation therapy and given at 45% chance of survival 16 years ago.  The minerals are minimally processed and placed into a natural sachet made out of birch tree (No bleach)  Our soil is depleted of trace minerals we are down 84% from 100 years ago and but they are numerous in the ocean. The minerals alkalize your water to 9.5 which is very important. Dr. Warburg won a Nobel prize for discovering cancer has a hard time surviving in an alkaline body.

THE ROOT CAUSE OF CANCER – Noble prize Winner Dr. Otto H Warburg . Dr. Warburg has devoted his life to study the causes of cancer.
“All normal cells have an absolute requirement for oxygen, but cancer cells can live without oxygen – a rule without exception. “Deprive a cell 35% of its oxygen for 48 hours and it may become cancerous.” Dr. Warburg has made it clear that the root cause of cancer is oxygen deficiency, which creates an acidic state in the human body. Dr Warburg also discovered that cancer cells are anaerobic (do not breathe oxygen) and cannot survive in the presence of high levels of oxygen, as found in an alkaline state.

Most bottled water when tested has a PH of less than 5, Diet coke is 1.5 and Coke is 2.5  (The sachet will blow up a diet coke)  Absorption is 300 times better than regular water because the water has a negative ION charge from the trace minerals which attract to our cells which have positive charge so absorption is better. Negative IONS are very healing for the body.  The sachet is considered a filtration device in other countries because it can remove chlorine from water immediately after dropping it in chlorinated water (you can test this with OT drops) 

I personally feel the contents in the sachet is beneficial for our bodies to help us stay mineralized, alkalized and hydrated.

According to the Truth About Cancer which you can find online Cancer is related to a toxic environment internally and externally, so personally I believe using X20 provides daily cleansing by providing optimal hydration.


You will use 2 sachets per day in 4 bottles of filtered water. After placing the sachet in the water bottle shake for 10 seconds and you can use again on the second refill. After the second use you can place the sachet in your plants to help them grow.


FocusUP – The Pure Energy Think-Drink

FocusUP is setting the new standard for energy products. It is uniquely formulated with internationally-researched energetic nutrients and botanical ingredients that are designed to improve focus, memory, mood, concentration and mental performance. Available in both capsules and a great tasting drink, FocusUP gives you the right kind of energy boost with none of the unhealthy byproducts and side effects of today’s popular energy drinks.

Benefits of FocusUP

  • Specialized ingredients – that improve focus, memory, mood, concentration and mental performance
  • Long-lasting energy boost – without the jitters and energy crashes associated with today’s popular energy drinks and shots
  • NO artificial flavors – sweeteners, colors, preservatives, acidic carbonation, sucrose or fructose with just 10 calories per serving

You have received a packet of focus up capsules and powder packets in your Xooma sample packet.  I recommend trying the powder which can be added to your xooma bottle along with your X20 one day and use the capsules on a separate day to see which one is most beneficial for you.

For additional information you can visit www.xoomapro.com (I can provide a 50.00 gift card toward specific purchases.

To order additional products please visit www.xooma.com/theoliveleaf



Healthy Eating Habits for Busy Women: A Guide for Total Beginners

Photo courtesy of Pixabay by freepht

When it comes to eating healthy, most of us are completely lost and confused. A recent study found that over half of all Americans are so overwhelmed when making healthier food choices, they would literally find it easier to do their own taxes. No wonder 1 in 4 people consume fast food at least one meal per day!


Unfortunately, one fast food meal alone can contain an entire day’s worth of calories – or more! Not to mention, diets consisting of large amounts of fast food and junk food have been contributing to a wide range of chronic (and even deadly) health conditions.

Here’s just a handful of the diseases, illnesses, and other medical conditions that have been associated with poor eating habits:

  • high cholesterol
  • high blood pressure
  • obesity
  • heart disease
  • stroke
  • breathing problems such as sleep apnea and asthma
  • reproductive and fertility issues
  • certain types of cancer


According to CDC data, many of the diet-related health conditions above can also be found on the list of the top 10 leading causes of death among American women. In addition, women in particular are at risk of certain reproductive problems, such as endometrial cancer or breast cancer, and fertility issues, including Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS).

Given the impact our diet has on our health, it’s understandable that many people are interested in healthier eating habits. Of course, many of these same people have no idea where to start.

If you’ve ever felt perplexed by food and nutrition, this article is for you. Here are some tips for any busy woman on how to overcome the daily grind by finding small ways to gradually improve nutrition and overall health:

Nutrition Issues

As we all know, healthy eating habits play a big role in improving our overall health and wellness. One very simple way to start improving your overall health is by making sure you are drinking enough water. Another tip is to make wise choices in swapping foods. For instance, you can reduce your caffeine intake (and save money) by skipping the Starbucks latte and drinking a cup of herbal tea instead. You should also avoid fad diets and instead focus on making small lifestyle changes each day at a time, which lead to more permanent behavior patterns.

 Other Ways to Boost Your Health

When in comes to improving your overall health, it’s important to realize that there are many factors to health and wellness. Nutrition is just one piece of the puzzle. You should also consider how your mental health, emotional well-being, stress from work, exercise habits, and any possible relationship issues might be impacting your overall physical health. Try to work on any relationship issues and begin implementing stress-reduction techniques to gradually improve your overall health in all areas of your life.

In Conclusion

Even if you currently feel unsure of where to begin when it comes to making healthier decisions, remind yourself that we all start somewhere. It’s never too late to begin down the path to better overall health – and by incorporating the small steps listed above, you’ll already be on the right track to a healthier lifestyle.


The Effects of Gut Health on Depression: A Review of The Literature

 The Effects of Gut Health on Depression: A Review of The Literature Brittany Cutler, The University of Georgia  Introduction Major depressive disorder includes the presence of sad, empty, or irritable mood along with cognitive changes that significantly affect an individuals’ capacity to function. In the United States, major depressive disorder has potential onset at any […]

Best Fall Foods for Health and Weight Loss

Melissa Bennett ND contributed this AJC article. Please check out this link.

Best Fall Foods for Health and Weight Loss