Ancient Secrets for Autumn Health

Dave_TrainerWhat’s the best type of exercise to stay healthy this autumn? Is it walking outside? Strength training? Meditative breathing? While all of these forms of exercise and many others are helpful to maintain health and prevent illness, the answer to this question may have been provided thousands of years ago.

Around 240 B.C., humans discovered ways of harmonizing with each season to prevent illness, maintain health and achieve longevity. In so doing, they documented several of these keys, principles, and philosophies to support the preservation of health and healing that are still relevant, and sometimes neglected, today.


The documented insights of the ancients took the shape of the essential text of Chinese Health and Healing called the Neijing Suwen or Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Medicine.  This classic text reveals many insights to health and longevity and some of them touch upon the importance of adapting to seasonal changes.

With autumn approaching, I’d like to share an excerpt (translated by Maoshing Ni, Shambala Publications ISBN 1-57062-080-6 © 1995, further edited by Paul Farago) that may offer some healthful tips for you this coming fall.

Here’s the brief excerpt:

In the months of Fall all things in nature reach their full maturity. The grains ripen and harvesting occurs. The Heavenly energy cools, as does the weather. The wind begins to stir.

This is the changing or pivoting point when the active phase (yang) turns into its opposite, the passive phase (yin).

One should retire with the sunset and arise with the dawn.

Just as the weather in Fall turns harsh, so does the emotional climate. It is therefore important to remain calm and peaceful, refraining from excess sadness so that one can make the transition to Winter smoothly. This is the time to gather one’s spirit and energy, be more focused, and not allow desires to run wild.

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Reflecting, meditating, and practicing slow breathing techniques by water is a very natural way to experience calm and peaceful emotions that are important for health in the autumn.

One must keep the Lung energy full, clean, and quiet. This means practicing breathing exercises to enhance Lung qi.  Also, one should refrain from grief, the emotion of the Lung. This will prevent Kidney or digestive problems in the Winter.

If this natural order is violated, damage will occur to the Lungs, resulting in diarrhea with undigested food in Winter. This compromises the body’s ability to store in Winter.

About Dave Barnas, M.S., CES, NASM-CPT

Dave is the true health guy. He is the founder and owner of True Health Unlimited, LLC, a personal health and fitness company in Tolland, CT & Wellness Writers, a subscription wellness newsletter service that incorporates live & virtual wellness workshops for companies across New England. Dave earned both a Bachelor's (1998) and Master's Degree (2000) in Nutritional Science from the University of Connecticut, and also holds certifications as a National Strength and Conditioning Association Certified Personal Trainer, National Academy of Sports Medicine Certified Personal Trainer and Corrective Exercise Specialist, Aerobics and Fitness Association of America Group Instructor, and Nutrition Specialist. He's also the lead author for four published works. Dave has over 20 years of combined experience in nutrition counseling, dietary supplement advising, personal training, corrective exercise training, health coaching and public speaking. In addition, he's spent over 25 years studying spirituality, meditation, and personal growth strategies. Dave's clients are all ages: youth, college championship level athletes, folks in their retired years, and everywhere in between. He's worked with three of the nation's leading physicians as a dietary supplement advisor and been a guest lecturer at Harvard University, Yale University, UConn, St. Joseph College and various church groups, health clubs, and high schools. In 2013, he was invited to Whole Foods Market to share his Real Food Therapy Guide. And in 2015, Dave's funny "Snowga" (yoga in the snow) video caught the attention of The National Weather Channel, who aired it to shake off cabin fever and bring laughter. In 2016, Dave & Hollie (his wife) founded Wellness Writers and deliver evidence-based Wellness E-newsletters to spread a message of health and happiness to various businesses throughout the US. Dave currently serves as a personal trainer in Tolland as well as a wellness coach and writer for several businesses, gyms and wellness facilities throughout the US.

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