You may have just shoveled out from winter’s last hurrah, but there is a guaranteed change in seasons on the way. Can you feel it? Soon the sun will be warming you from the outside, and your body will call for something different than soup and a sweater. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, spring is liver and gallbladder season. Just as buds and plants are getting ready to reappear, our bodies are wanting to regenerate as well. Sandra Lanshin, acupuncturist, Chinese herbalist and the founder of Treatment by Lanshin, says, “Spring energy is all about moving upward and outward, opposite of the contractive direction of winter that pulls our energy inward for storage.”
One way we can support this new spring energy is to bring back foods that give you what your body is craving. While it’s a good time to detox, it doesn’t have to be an all or nothing feat. Add any of these detoxifying foods to support your natural rhythm and energy needs this spring and see how your body responds.
Kale has moved from a garnish to a trend to a household staple in a relatively short amount of time. Dr. Drew Ramsey says the sulforaphane nutrient found in kale “amps up your body’s natural detox power.” Look no further for kale inspiration than to pick your favorite salad and try subbing half to all of your greens out for any variety of kale: dinosaur, curly, Russian or red. For anyone who finds crunchy fresh kale too much to digest, you don’t have to keep it raw to get in on the benefits. Try this Fried Brown Rice With Kale and Turmeric or sauté chopped kale with a little coconut oil or ghee until it softens or crisps as you like. Averse to kale? Try adding greens like arugula, spinach, dandelion greens, or herbs like parsley and mint to salads and sauces.
Colorful Root Vegetables
Carrots contain carotenoids called beta-carotene and beets contain betanin, both phytonutrients that stimulate and support the liver’s ability to remove waste. According to Dr. Brad of Hope Clinic, raw foods can be too overwhelming—cooked beets and carrots offer more gentle support while letting your organs do the detoxifying. Try this antioxidant-rich roasted beet and blueberry salad or meal prep our beet hummus and raw carrots for easy snacking.
Sandra says to go towards a little sour. “Stock up on lemons, limes for their sour flavors, which cleanse and stimulate movement in the liver.” For a refreshing spring juice, try Jolene Hart’s Green Beauty Refresh Juice with watercress and limes to detoxify by supporting digestion and your skin health in the process. Or perhaps your apple cider vinegar habit went to the wellness wayside. Bring it back with a touch of honey and 12 ounces of water for a tart and cleansing beverage for spring.