Countdown to healthy, new habits
If you’re anything like me, you’re more than ready to escape hibernation and welcome in a new season of change. After the loooooooooong winter months, Spring’s gentle glimpses of regrowth will begin to inspire fresh commitments in people (myself included) to get back on track and make way for healthier habits.
You may already see the start of warmer weather as the perfect time to “spring clean” your home (as the saying goes), but did you know it’s also a wonderful chance to detox your body, mind and spirit? And it’s easier than you might think!
With the Spring Equinox happening on March 20th, I encourage you to consider rethinking old habits and welcoming in some new ones with these top four switches to revitalize your health.
Spring clean your kitchen.
Just as we swap out heavy, winter clothes for lighter spring styles in our closets, we should swap out heartier (aka. boxed) ingredients for fresher fare in our kitchens, too.
When taking inventory of what lies within your cupboards and fridge, clear out any junk that doesn’t serve your health goals, wipe down any areas that may not get cleaned regularly, and reorganize everything with accessibility in mind. The goal is to simplify your daily routine!
While spring cleaning your home, use the infamous KonMari Method to “tidy your space, transform your life.” Mindfully sort like items with like, toss anything expired, donate goods that you won’t use, and only keep things that will be used and spark joy.
Spring clean your eating regime.
Save time and money — while improving your health — by cutting back on dining out and making fresh, seasonal meals from home! Choose fresh or frozen first. Buy local and in season. Taste the rainbow (as in: the more colourful, the better!). Eat mindfully. Keep it simple. Organic lean meats or fish served with brightly coloured veggies and a healthy grain like quinoa is a satisfying, delicious and nutritious dinner — and quick to prepare!
Meal planning in a rut? Instead of boxed mac & cheese, try a homemade recipe like this one from Super Healthy Kids as a tasty comfort meal everyone is sure to love. Simply swapping out that orange processed powder for real cheese will uplevel the nutritional quotient. Looking for a bolder variation? Try this vegan mac & cheese recipe from Mallory Maddox that calls for butternut squash as a hidden health boost — it’s great for kids and grownups alike!
Remember, when meals are made with love, you can taste — and feel — the difference. 🙂
Spring clean your body.
Many people decide to do a cleanse in the spring to help detoxify the body and eliminate the sludge of winter “comfort foods” and all those holiday indulgences. Whether you believe in cleanses or not, making healthier choices for the body and gut is something everyone can, and should, do on the daily.
To start the detoxification process and spring clean your body, start by cutting back on alcohol, added sugars, processed foods, excess sodium, and additives from your diet. And, since the skin is our largest organ, don’t forget to take a look at the things you’re putting on your body (chemicals and toxins in your daily skin care products — body wash, lotions, deodorants, etc.), while also paying close attention to the things going in your body.
Simplify your daily habits and make healthier choices each day by choosing:
- Market fresh produce — choosing organic / local for The Dirty Dozen
- Grass-fed, organic lean meats
- Healthy fats — avocados, nuts, cold-pressed oils
- Probiotics — keep your gut healthy with good bacteria!
- Whole grains — quinoa, buckwheat, amaranth
- Water, water, water!
- Organic, paraben-free, sulfate-free beauty products
- Certified pure essential oils
Spring clean your mood.
It’s been a dark, snowy, cold winter with many people hibernating indoors as they count down the days to warmer weather and sunshine. If you’ve been feeling low this winter, it could be seasonal depression, which can result from decreased levels of Vitamin D. Increase your daily dose of the sunshine vitamin by incorporating more foods like salmon and leafy greens in your diet, which are naturally rich in Vitamin D. You can also increase your intake of Omega 3’s which can elevate your mood and your skin health.
Don’t forget to bring the outdoors in! Fresh air enhances your mood and the energy in your home. So open up some windows, clear out any negative vibes, and enjoy nature’s healing energy. Consider picking up some seasonal plants, flowers or greenery that will thrive indoors to further boost your mood and well-being… It’s a proven pick-me-up and stress-reducer!
Spring’s fresh winds of change often inspire us to get outdoors and become more active again. Exercising is a great way to clear unwanted toxins from your body, build strength, enhance vitality, and boost your mood. If you’re looking to increase your steps each day, get creative and have some fun. Start a walking group on your lunch hour, take dance classes, try out indoor rock climbing, join a local baseball league with friends… The options are endless!
By reshaping your goal to simply feeling your best, and making small changes every day geared towards optimal health and vitality, you’ll be feeling fine in no time.
Remember, the hardest step is the first one out the door!