We’ve made it through the darker and colder winter months and it’s finally spring! The longer, warmer days are upon us and even our bodies are excited!
It’s very common to reach for a cleanse in January, especially after all of that indulgent eating over the holidays. But that’s not what your body was looking for then.
In the winter our bodies are working on preservation and maintenance. It’s a quiet process that you may not notice—but it’s an important one. We need our bodies to do those important maintenance jobs to keep up with our daily wear and tear.
With the brighter sun and warmer days comes a shift in our bodies’ processes. Now your body is ready for cleansing and rejuvenation.
You might be feeling it yourself; I find that I crave different foods when the weather warms up. I want lighter, fresher foods instead of warm and heavy winter comfort foods.
By listening to this shift, I can help my body in its natural cleansing cycle.
Our bodies do some form of detoxification every night while we’re sleeping. In the spring and fall, our bodies cleanse a bit more. Their own form of spring cleaning if you will.
Supporting this natural detox cycle can be helpful, but that doesn’t mean you need to go through a harsh cleanse full of laxatives and fasting. Thankfully, that type of cleansing is out of fashion and for good reason: it’s totally unnecessary.
We simply need to support our body through this season. No headaches, tiredness, or diarrhea are needed. Big YAY for that!
Through supporting our body by enjoying some detoxification supportive foods, we can make the most of this beautiful season!
Five Gentle Ways to Support Your Spring Cleanse
1. Enjoy lots of cruciferous veggies
This family of veggies—including broccoli, cauliflower, kale, and cabbage—is full of indole-3-carbinol (I3C) and sulfur, both of which support our natural detox cycle beautifully. Enjoy at least 3-4 servings a week of these beautiful veggies.
Extra bonus: broccoli sprouts are higher by weight of I3C than broccoli. Add some to a nice spring salad or sandwich for an added boost.
2. Add some of the allium family too
Garlic, onions, and leeks are also chockfull of sulfur and are great detox supporters. Don’t be afraid of this high flavor family.
3. Grab a mug of Flor-Essence tea
Flor-Essence supports your body’s natural detox process by helping it remove toxins more efficiently. It’s an easy way to support your body’s own spring cleaning.
Inspired by a traditional Ojibwa formula, the eight-herb formula was developed and perfected through years of research by nurse Rene Caisse. The result is a traditional formula that can help the body cleanse itself, naturally.
Add three tablespoons to a warm mug of water up to three times a day and enjoy!
4. Drink lots of water
I’m sure I’m not the first person to tell you to drink water and I certainly won’t be the last. It’s especially important when your body is cleansing.
Your body is trying to release both fat- and water-soluble toxins, and you need to drink enough water to let your kidneys flush out the water-soluble ones.
It’s not just your liver and kidneys that are detoxing. Every cell is moving out some garbage, and this is easier when your cells are fully hydrated.
Plus, your skin (another detox organ) will look extra plump and glowing when you’re fully hydrated.
Drink 8-10 glasses of water or more per day. Drink enough that your urine is pale yellow to clear all day long.
5. Support your lymph through dry brushing and movement
Your lymphatic system is a vast network of fluid like your cardiovascular system. It has many jobs, and one role is the garbage collector for your cells.
Anytime your cells have something to throw away, it lands in your lymph. By supporting our lymphatic system, we can move out that garbage out more effectively.
Our lymphatic system doesn’t have its own pump (like our heart for the cardiovascular system). Instead, it uses our muscle movement to move this fluid. The problem is… we’ve become very sedentary creatures.
Take advantage of these longer days and warmer weather and get moving! Go for a walk, hit the gym, or enjoy your favorite form of exercise. If you sit at a desk all day, set a reminder to get up and walk around at least once an hour to get some extra movement.
Another easy way to support your lymph is through dry brushing. All you need is a natural bristle brush and 30 seconds before you hit the shower to do this process. Click herefor full instructions.
By adding enjoying some yummy veggies, drinking some lovely tea, getting hydrated, and by moving a bit more, you can support your body’s natural spring cleaning!
Lisa Kilgour is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist (RHN), founder of LisaKilgour.com, and a faculty member at the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition.