Spring Detox Tips

Here are some great tips for spring cleaning!  Thanks to Kris Carr for writing this great post….

‘All over the country, even in the Northeast, it’s come extra early this year (which is a whole other topic –climate change anyone?). But for now, let’s focus on the positive aspects: sunshine, getting outside and shedding extra layers of clothing. And while we’re at it, let’s shed some toxins too! They’ve most likely built up over the winter. Richer foods, fewer fresh vegetables and fruits, lowered immunity, and lack of sunshine — all contribute to a general feeling of stagnant and heavy energy. Toxins get stuck in any extra insulation we may have accumulated over the colder months. So now seems to be the perfect time to transition, not only to warmer weather, but to a lighter and brighter you!

Spring is a wonderful time for a deep cleanse, something like my 21-Day Clean Program. But if you’re looking for some simple tips to get started with right now, here are my top spring detox steps.

1. Move. Yoga, running, walking, swimming, biking, playing with your kids, having a dance party for one (or more), deep cleaning the house — do whatever you can to move your body in as many ways as possible. Lift heavy things (being sensible and taking care of your back of course); go for long, unplugged rambles (without your phone or iPod); push your kids on the swings; lift your body weight with pushups (no fancy equipment required); leap over driftwood on the beach (even walking in the sand is a great workout) or fallen trees in the woods; rake the lawn; push a mower; sweep the floors; scrub the shower. Seriously, anything you can do to vary the way your body moves and stretches is going to get your lymph flowing and literally wring out your internal organs. Toxins are released through body fluid, and that includes sweat. So go ahead and sprint, climb, jump, have sex, whatever makes you use your muscles and heart and produces some cleansing sweat. Exercise also boosts your mood, which makes you want to move even more; so exercise in any form is definitely at the top of the list!

2. Breathe. While it’s important to move around, it’s also important to be still. Cleansing the body also involves cleansing the mind. So take some deep belly breaths. Feel the breath travel down into your belly and maybe even down into your pelvis, your knees and your toes. Then feel it travel all the way back up through the body, using a count of 4-8, if that helps even and steady it out. Inhale fresh oxygen and exhale acidity in the blood (carbon dioxide). If someone were next to you, imagine that they couldn’t tell when you were breathing in and breathing out — that’s how steady and even you want to make each inhale and exhale.

3. Eat fermented foods. Every culture (pun intended) all over the world has always included a form of fermented foods in their diets as a way to help digestion, immunity and vitality. Unpasteurized, fermented foods are full of beneficial bacteria (probiotics), enzymes and lactic acid, which our bodies need for optimal food assimilation. So eat fermented veggies (sauerkraut, kimchee), miso, wheat-free tamari or nama shoyu, raw pickles, and if you can tolerate dairy, you can incorporate raw yogurt into your spring diet (ideally a little bit with every meal, but definitely try for at least once daily) for increased longevity, extra detoxification and lots of alkalizing action. We have a great (and easy) recipe here.

4. Get some spirulina. And put it in/on everything. Seriously. It goes with both savory and sweet things (salads, soups, smoothies, puddings, raw treats, chocolate, ice cream, superfood blends, juices, spice mixes or even by the spoonful for adventurous types who don’t mind green teeth). Why should you be eating lots of spirulina? This powdered algae is one of the highest sources of protein (in both the plant and animal kingdoms). Spirulina contains all eight essential amino acids; is rich in many antioxidants, vitamins and minerals; contains as much iron as red meat; has tons of enzymes and essential fatty GLAs that fight inflammation; helps fight allergies; gives you glowing skin and hair; and is an overall detoxifier and superfood that your body will thank you for consuming in large quantities!

5. Drink one of your meals. And I don’t mean alcohol. Have a shake, smoothie, juice or soup for one of your meals. Ideally it would be breakfast or dinner when your digestion is least strongest. A shake for breakfast eases your body into the day with tons of nutrition (especially if you add spirulina!) and energy, since your body won’t have to immediately start digesting a heavy meal and can be free to power you through your busy day, hydrated and energized. Add healthy fats like coconut butter or manna, almond butter, or a handful of nuts or seeds. You’ll be satiated for hours until lunch, which is ideal for optimal digestion. If you have a liquid meal at night, you’re freeing your body up while you sleep to boost your immune system, cleanse toxins and repair systems in your body rather than spend that time digesting a heavy evening meal. So drink up and clean out!

Bonus Tip: Lighten your load overall by adopting some sort of elimination diet for a few weeks. My recommendation is to eliminate processed dairy, gluten, sugar, caffeine, alcohol, processed foods, red meat, soy, peanuts and corn. Eat mostly fresh vegetables, whole non-gluten grains, moderate amounts of seasonal low- sugar fruits, nuts, seeds, seaweeds, and of course drink plenty of good-quality purified or spring water.

With all the moving, breathing, drinking water and eating amazing foods, make sure you find time to listen to the happy sounds of spring and thank your body for carrying you through another winter by lightening up and peeling back some layers!

Jenny Nelson is a Clean Program Wellness Coach.

 

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Ingrid Lincoln
    Apr 20, 2012 @ 15:48:20

    Thanks, Amy! I enjoyed this post. I do have a question about any suggestions you may have. Do you have suggestion about a person with hypoglemic tendencies in regarding to smoothies. Like any kind of smoothie that would be better. I know when I usually drink smoothies I cannot do it as a ‘meal’ since the fruits are sugary and can spike my sugar level and drop and about one hour to two hours I am hungry again. I cannot do it as a meal per se but have done them as a treat.

    Reply

    • Amy Huebner Health Coach
      Apr 20, 2012 @ 16:24:51

      I actually don’t have sweet shakes/smoothies. I will make up a green juice as a meal replacement during a cleanse: kale, parsley, cucumber, celery, 1 lime or lemon, ginger, a carrot: yum. Or I will make up a shake with hemp, flax, coconut yogurt and almond milk, cinnamon and stevia as an easy to digest first meal of the day.

      Reply

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