For many of us, cleansing has become an essential part of our healthy lives. Fortunately, spring is the absolute best time of year to sweep out the internal cobwebs. An efficient way to do this is to flood our bodies with the incredible nutrition that seasonal spring foods can provide. When practiced regularly, cleansing can help stabilize weight, bring emotions into balance, strengthen our organs, energize our spirit, and give us a jolt of natural energy for the new season.
Here’s a short list of some of spring’s most nutrient-dense healing and cleansing foods. You’ll find these foods in abundance at your local farmers markets and health food stores throughout the season.
A superb and succulent detox vegetable. Asparagus is a natural diuretic, and fills our gut with friendly bacteria, aiding digestion and making it difficult for unhealthy bacteria to take up residence.
2. Arugula and Baby Greens
Spring brings baby greens, poking through the earth and rising to greet the sun. There’s little to no fat in spring greens, but they’re high in vitamins and minerals, and detoxifying for the liver, so pile your plate high.
3. Kale and Collard Greens
These power-packed vegetables are full of phytonutrients that may help prevent disease and help your body run smoothly. Kale and collard greens are great sources of fiber and are good for your eyesight. Greens of all kinds are super!
4. Spring Onions
Spring onions pack a healthy punch and are tasty to boot. These veggies are good for your heart, full of powerful antioxidants, and help reduce cancer risk. Spring onions also help control blood sugar, aid the respiratory system, and have antibacterial properties.
5. Fava Beans
Fava beans are highly nutritious and a really healthy alternative to meat. These beans are low in calories and fat, yet rich in fiber and protein. They help the body absorb vitamins and aid in regulating blood pressure and heart function, while promoting good vision and skin.
Artichokes are a no fat, no cholesterol, high fiber, and vitamin-rich spring detox vegetable. This tasty vegetable is a diuretic with powerful cleansing properties. It’s also very high in phytonutrients that help prevent cancer and heart disease.
While pineapple isn’t a local fruit for many of us, it’s out in the spring and loaded with beneficial digestive enzymes that help keep the body balanced. This flavorful fruit stimulates the kidneys and aids in the detox process.
8. Green Peas
Green peas are an excellent source of protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. These vegetables are full of good: for the bones, for the heart, and for optimal health.
Avocados are out in full force in the spring in California. They’re high in fat, but it’s the good, heart-healthy fat our body needs. Research suggests avocados can help lower cholesterol in some people, while packing a fiber and vitamin-packed punch. This creamy fruit is also great for the skin and hair.
10. Green Garlic
Green garlic boasts immense health benefits. It’s younger garlic that in appearance resembles a scallion. A natural health remedy, green garlic helps lower cholesterol, control blood pressure, and aids circulation. It’s antibiotic, rich in iron, and good for the heart, among many other benefits.
11. Sea Vegetables
The term “sea vegetables” might sound a bit foreign, but chances are you’ve heard about a least a few, like nori, wakame, arame, hijiki, or dulse. These vegetables are rejuvenating, good for your health, and rich in calcium, potassium, minerals, and magnesium.
Simply said, water is life—that’s super. Add a slice of lemon for zest and an alkaline tonic. If you’re in a place where maple water is available, I highly recommend drinking this for the three to four weeks that it is available. It tastes like the purest water available, is full of minerals, and is filtered through a maple forest, with a subtle maple sweetness. Staying hydrated is pivotal to good health and a good spring cleanse.
Moira Nordholt is owner, head bottle washer, and chief of deliciousness at feelgoodguru, a super-healthy, plant-powered catering and delivery service in Toronto founded on the principles of wellness and optimism. She will be guiding a 21-day hands-on, tastebuds-on spring cleanse, Feel Good Fast, and she’d love you to join in!