Spring is finally here! Winter is melting, rain is falling and the earth is heavy with moisture. Spring is a natural cleansing season. Once it starts getting warmer our bodies are wired to shed, flush and lighten up. You may have noticed that you are craving lighter foods, more veggies and greens. Our bodies follow the natural rhythm of nature and if we listen to our own innate wisdom, we can benefit by improving our health.
Doing some kind of purification at least twice a year is necessary, because over time we naturally build up toxins in the body. It doesn’t have to be a full-on cleanse, although that would be the best to get the maximum results, but at least eat the foods of the season. Food plays a central role in how you feel and attention to your diet can change everything!
Toxins get stored in our cells gumming up the works and causing all kinds of problems and can be the root cause of many diseases. Even habits and emotions get lodged in the tissue layers of the body. To access those deeper layers and make permanent changes you need to purify.
Here are some symptoms of toxic build up in the body:
- Chronic Headaches
- Recurring colds
- Food intolerance
- Painful or swollen joints
- Foul smelling body odor
- Lack of mental clarity
- Food Cravings
Your symptoms are messengers communicating to you about what’s going on in your body, not just a nuisance. When you cleanse, you get rid of some of the junk and reset your body. You have a clearer mind, less pain and more energy. You feel stronger and more vital. Who doesn’t want that?!
Spring is the season of the liver and gallbladder. The liver represents the emotion of anger and the gallbladder represents trust. When you cleanse, it’s not just physical, it’s mental and emotional too!
Your liver has over 500 functions it performs in the body. Since one of its jobs is to process all the toxins moving through the body, it is super important to support the liver.
Eating nature’s gifts of bitter spring greens like dandelion, chickweed, chard, radicchio, beet greens, fennel and watercress can help drain heat and dampness from the body and support liver cleansing. These foods bring relief from liver sluggishness and poor circulation.
Add pungent foods like radishes, arugula, (my personal favorite!) chives, mustard greens, raw onions and garlic. Legumes, sprouts, millet, barley and buckwheat are all good choices.
Here are some more liver supporting foods to eat every day.
- Avocado, spiced with cumin
- Brussel Sprouts
- Cardamom (add it to everything)
- Black Pepper
Your digestive power weakens in the evening so eating a light, early dinner is crucial for detoxing. Eat fresh lightly cooked vegetables, grains, lentils and lean protein.
Say NO to heavy sauces, alcohol, dairy, sugar, fried/oily food, baked goods and caffeine. Reduce meat if possible. Eat bitter greens to strengthen digestion.
Use herbs to support the liver in detoxing. You can find good bitter formulas or make your own.
Besides the herbs listed above try:
- Schizandra Berries
- Reishi Mushroom
- Burdock Root
- Dandelion Root
- Milk Thistle
Drink plenty of warm liquids to flush out the junk. Drink more water than you think you need to. Make sure to hydrate first thing in the morning. Avoid cold drinks which reduce digestive fire and increase digestive toxins.
Here are two drink recipes to try:
To stimulate the release of toxins and boost fat digestion, increase metabolism, improve circulation and clear mucus accumulations.
- Hot water with a pinch of cayenne, ¼ of a lemon, 1 tsp. of honey and a few drops of apple cider vinegar.
For cooling and soothing the digestive tract and the mind.
If you follow some of these simple suggestions you will start to strengthen your digestive fire and maybe, just maybe you might feel a little better!