5 Tips for Spring Cleaning Your Health:
The weather is warming up, April showers have come, and nature is showing signs that spring is here. As with most season changes, our body can sometimes need a little gentle clearing to remove toxins, shift up habits and make space for the new energy of the next season. Spring is the season of renewal, rebirth and awakening. We hibernated and stored, or insulated all winter. Now it’s time to awaken, shed, clear and detoxify! As always, be gentle with self as we transition and shift. Any extreme’s can bring the body out of balance even more, so be careful with fasts, extreme cleanses or intense, frequent workouts. In addition, be mindful of inner dialog and repetitive thoughts, especially negative ones. Thoughts can have big effects of health and well-being, so… be nice, kind and thoughtful.
Here are 5 Tips on Spring Cleaning Your Body, Mind and Environment for Better Health:
- Clear out your living space. Open your window on warmer days and allow fresh air to flow. Wipe down all surfaces and frequently held/handled objects like phones, remotes, refrigerator/pantry door, door knobs. I like to use either Thyme Oil or Tea tree oil solutions as both are highly antimicrobial and are natural. Bleach can be very harsh on environment as well as respiratory system, not to mention caustic to skin. I avoid bleach completely.
- Get outside for exercise. Take a walk or run outside as you breathe in fresh air. Being outside can be good for your hormones and happiness. Soak up the Vitamin D by basking in the sunlight. Take some mindful moments outside, undistracted, and connect to nature around you. It is good for the spirit and soul, not to mention mind and body!
- Plant a garden to clean the air, detoxify and fuel your health throughout the fall and winter. Many vegetables, flowers and herbs hold medicinal and cleansing properties. Digging in the dirt, preparing and maintaining a garden can be very rewarding, as well as challenging work. If you do not have land to plant, have a container garden for patio, windowsill or kitchen counter. Juice Plus sells cool Tower Gardens that can grow vegetables in a contained and sustainable space. Some Plants/ Flowers/ Vegetables to Grow and Heal:
- Sage, Thyme, Oregano, Basil, Rosemary, Cilantro- great for cooking and healing.
- Yarrow, Echinacea (Cone Flower), Lavender, Feverfew, Calendula, Chamomile
- Beets, Kale, Swiss Chard, Garlic, Broccoli, Cabbage, Tomato, Asparagus, Berries (blueberries).
- Detoxify the body by cleaning up the diet. Many holistic, natural practitioners recommend doing “cleanses” twice a year, one in the spring and one in the fall. I caution people on doing extreme cleanses such as a “juice cleanse” or “fasting” or anything that eliminates variety and whole food options from diet. These can throw the body further out of balance and can often lead to rebound carbohydrate binges once off. Instead, I recommend eliminating added sugar, processed, packaged foods and foods that are known irritants to digestion such as wheat and wheat products, red meat, alcohol, and dairy. I know…this is not easy, but it usually takes 7-10 days to clear toxins out of the body. You can eat mostly fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean meats (fish and poulty), nuts and beans or legumes for 7-10 days. It is amazing what paying attention, on purpose and planning what foods you put into your body can do for your health and energy. It is called MINDFUL EATING. I offer a Mindful Eating Reset for this purpose!
- Synchronize and reset your SLEEP. Sleep plays a huge role in our body’s ability to clear out toxins, decrease inflammation and heal. The change of light, daylight hours and weather can often offset our sleep/wake schedule. Work on re-synching your sleep/wake cycle and finding a consistent routine to help you get 7+ hours of sleep each night. If you are having trouble going to sleep: Try a warm bath with lavender, or pm yoga. Sometimes journaling before bed can help clear the mind. Avoid any screens at bedtime.. turn OFF the TV, IPad, Phone and Computer as the blue screens and stimuli of screens can affect sleep. Trouble staying asleep? Try to increase magnesium levels by eating almonds, a banana, even a bowl of low sugar, whole grain cereal or small yogurt 1-2 hrs before bed. These foods are high in magnesium.
Enjoy the warmer, fresher weather of spring. I hope you can take time to breathe, slowly and deeply the fresh air and soak up the smells, sounds and sunlight! Be well beautiful souls.