Tis the season for a little spring cleaning! Isn’t it weird that there is just something about this season that makes us want to clear the junk and make our living space more open and fresh? Even in sunny So. Cal., where we hardly even have any cold weather, the instinct is still there to clear the clutter of winter.
Spring is also a great time to clear the clutter of a winter body. This is the time of year that lots of fresh produce comes into season and the frozen and canned fruits and veggies can be retired for a few glorious months!
Though some argue, spring is actually a very natural time to “detox” your body as well. Here are some wonderfully cleansing foods that are in season that can help in that process (remember, organic is usually your best option, especially for detoxing.):
Lemons are well known to be loaded with vitamins, especially Vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant, and flavonoids, which also contain cancer fighting properties. They are also used frequently as a digestive aid and for just about every detox program known to man! When studied, a lemon cleanse is shown to decrease inflammation markers in the body when compared to reduced calorie or normal diets.
This humble little sour fruit can be a great addition to your daily routine by just drinking the juice of half a lemon in your morning glass of water.
Popular in many Asian cultures, green tea has long been known to contain powerful antioxidants that are excellent for reducing inflammation. It is also been shown in some studies to reduce the effects of heavy metals (like lead). Studies also show that drinking 4 cups of green tea per day can reduce cancer risk. Seems like a worthy drink to add to a daily routine!
Beets are another root veggie very high in antioxidants. It has loads of nutrients that are helpful in helping to cleanse the liver and support it’s function including: betaine, which helps the liver to eliminate toxins; pectin, a prebiotic fiber which helps to keep the cleared toxins from being taken back up into the body, and other anti-inflammatories that encourage cleansing and detoxification.
GreenVeggies (Especially leafies)
Dark leafy greens are full of fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, some of which haven’t even been discovered yet! Some of the benefits include digestive support, immune support, lowering cardiovascular risk, helping build strong bones, and can even reduce cancer risk!
Ginger. Yum! Aside from adding some delicious bite to your fruit and veggies, ginger root is an adaptogen, revered in history for multiple medicinal purposes throughout many cultures. It contains chromium, magnesium and zinc, (among others), which makes it great for blood circulation, cold and flu home remedies, and cancer prevention. It is also great for motion and morning sickness and easing general stomach upset, is a wonderful immune booster and is even a powerful anti inflammatory pain reliever. Oh, and did I mention that it can also be helpful for detoxing?
Garlic is ridiculous. It is one of the most studied herbs around and really amazing in its body supportive properties. Intake of garlic has been found to be inversely related to many types of cancer. As in, it seems to be able to protect against many types of cancers. It has antioxidants, is anti-microbial, and helps to modulate drug metabolizing enzymes. In short, if you can handle it, a daily dose of garlic is an excellent choice to support your spring cleaning.
Another one rich in antioxidants, (are we seeing a theme?). Artichokes are a natural diuretic, and a big supporter of the liver. It provides nutrients that help with bile production and the release of gastric juices, as well as fiber to aid in digestion.
Though most people see weeds, the humble dandelion is actually a powerhouse of supportive nutrients. Not only is this full of prebiotic fiber(food that feeds the beneficial microbes in your gut), but it also carries a heavy load of antioxidants, and is rich in Vitamin A, K and calcium. It is known for promoting stimulation of the liver and assisting in digestion. Both the leaves and roots can be consumed.
Love it or hate it, (there is usually no in between), cilantro is another great source of vitamins A and K and lots of antioxidants. It is often used to help chelate heavy metals from your body, and is also anti-microbial and can stimulate insulin to help lower blood sugar.
If you love it, it is good on almost anything, but especially salads. If you hate it, well, there are 9 other things on the list…
This under appreciated cruciferous is not just a tiny cabbage. It stands alone in nutrient value, being loaded with fiber, minerals and vitamins. As such, it is supportive of gut health, heart health, and is a cancer preventative. Eating them daily can help to reduce oxidative stress, and increase detoxification enzymes in the body.
Try them sautéed with a little sea salt and garlic with a sprinkling of parmesan cheese for a delicious side dish!
And the bonus: Water!
One of our best and most simple detox supporters, water is often neglected in the land of drink abundance. It would be easy to drink liquids all day without ever having a splash of water, but there is nothing quite as beneficial for our detox organs as mineral rich pure spring water. The rule of thumb is generally half of your body weight in ounces per day, but really, the goal is keep your urine a nice light yellow color–not too dark and not clear.
One MORE Bonus:
Because spring IS such a good time to cleanse the body and support the liver and kidneys, I am offering a very comprehensive 21 DAY SPRING REBOOT. Only 2 more days until the cart closes. Click the picture below for more information and to sign up!