Welcome to Fall in Minnesota!
By Dr. Heather Karls
There are so many things that I look forward to at this time of year. We are so fortunate to live in the Twin Cities where there are abundant opportunities all around us. The entire state is full of color in October. One of my favorite activities to do this month is visit Apple Orchards and Pumpkin patches.
If you don’t already have your favorite Orchard, then let me suggest two that are close to St Paul. Pinetree Apple Orchard in White Bear Lake is in a beautiful setting where you get a view of the lake, especially when you take the wagon ride. They offer a corn maze, pick your own pumpkins, and of course a great selection of apples, including homemade pies, rollovers, doughnuts, caramel apples, fresh cider and gifts. This orchard is not a “pick your own” orchard, the apples are already picked and sorted. The second orchard I frequent is Aamodts Apple Orchard. It is on the way to Stillwater off Highway 36 on Manning Avenue. They offer “pick your own” apples, a tractor pulled train ride and a goat farm for kids. There is Thor’s hard cider for the adults and wagon rides for everyone. Before going to these or your favorite Orchard, check their website as hours and activities often change based on if you go on a weekday or weekend.
Chiropractic hint: Wear good shoes as the ground is uneven. Make sure to take in the scenery around you and be aware of your senses as an Orchard is a great place to experience different textures, colors, smells and tastes. Make sure to stock up on plenty of those apples as they are high in both insoluble and soluble fiber, phytochemicals (including quercetin which is a flavonoid that has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties) and good old vitamin C.
Now, about those pumpkin patches: I vote for the pick your own pumpkin patches. There are numerous in the Twin Cities; again Pinetree Apple Orchard has a large pumpkin area, Afton Apple Orchard, and further out would be Pinehaven and Emma Krumbees. While it is not a true grown pumpkin patch, the Minnesota Zoos Jack-O-lantern Spectacular is now in its 2nd year and runs throughout October.
Chiropractic hint: Again, wear good shoes! Use your legs, not your back to pick up that perfect pumpkin! Speaking of pumpkins, there are varieties more nutritious then others. Pumpkin is low calorie (I am talking about real pumpkin, not that which is found in your flavored latte drink) and contains Vitamin A which is a powerful antioxidantthat is good for eyesight and your skin. It also has potassium which is vital for nerve and muscle function, especially heart muscle cells. Pumpkin is also a source of fiber and vitamin C. Pumpkins require space but otherwise are easy to grow, maybe try growing your own pumpkins next year!