You’ve set the clocks ahead, you’re swopping out sweaters for tanks, and boots for flip-flops, but what about in the kitchen – what are you doing to get your body ready for spring and summer? Here are three keys to spring clean your body – inside and out.
1) Anti-OX! When it comes to cleaning up your insides, there’s nothing better than nature’s clean-up team …antioxidants. These powerful plant nutrients run around inside your body cleaning up the winter’s dirt and cobwebs. That’s right, eating organic fruits and vegetables of different colors daily is like having a personal cleaning team taking care of you from the inside out. Organic is key because it means fewer toxins going in, but also, studies have shown organic fruits and vegetables to contain more antioxidants than chemically farmed ones. Also remember, the goal isn’t to look for only one fruit or vegetable with the most antioxidant quantity, it’s to consume a variety of fruits and vegetables since they all have blends of different antioxidants (like a mop, a broom, a dust pan…you need them all in your cleaning tool set). Some AshleyKoffApproved (AKA) http://www.ashleykoffapproved.com/ak-listspring cleaning faves: Wildwood organic salsa, Organic America micro salad, Sambazon organic açai smoothie pack
2) Belly Busters No season is the right season for a bloated or flabby belly, but as you reduce layers in favor of more form fitting lighter clothes, spring and summer are a key time to address your mid-section. Working from the inside out, a healthy digestive system enables your body to use nutrients efficiently, clear waste effectively, and prevents bloating. Probiotics (ie “good” bacteria) are essential to achieving a healthy digestive system – either as preventive health or treatment (for anyone who has ever taken antibiotics, birth control pills, or suffered from a food borne illness). Cultured foods like kefirs, kimchi, natto, tempeh, yogurts and kombucha are great ways to get these key nutrients in to your digestive tract. But caution, as great as these sources can be for probiotics, if they are loaded with added sugars – even organic ones – the negatives of the added sugar for promoting belly fat and feeding bad bacteria will cancel out the positives of the probiotics. Look for plain organic versions of these foods – you can always make them sweeter by adding organic fruit or a dab of quality sweetener yourself. Some AshleyKoffApproved (AKA) spring cleaning faves: Green Valley Organics plain kefir, Stonyfield Farm plain organic lowfat yogurt, Nancy’s organic cultured cottage cheese, Align probiotic
3) Scale Solutions Winter may have left it’s mark on your waistline, and the above tips will help you begin to remedy that, but it undoubtedly also left your skin dry, pale, scale-y and in need of some summer lovin’. Before you launch out into the sun sans sunscreen or lather up in oil for a truly 80’s style quick tan and moisturize, try taking a different approach. Nourish your skin from the inside out. Our essential fatty acids, including one key omega 6 fatty acid known as GLA, help return moisture back to winter skin in just a few sips or bites. Try wild salmon, hemp hearts, chia seeds, and walnuts to get these key nutrients. And then consider the quality of what you put on your skin too. Some AshleyKoffApproved (AKA) spring cleaning faves: Vital Choice wild salmon, Manitoba Harvest hemp hearts, Marie Veronique tinted moisturizer, Linda Kammins skin& hair care products, and RMS Beauty makeup.
So while we can’t turn back the clocks (at least not til fall), incorporating these tips into your daily regime can help get your body (and mind) ready for all that spring and summer have to offer. And remember, the same thing goes for your cupboards as your closet – if you haven’t used something in a year (or a season) it’s a good time to trade it or donate it or dump it to make room for quality spring products you will use.
Ashley Koff RD is a Qualitarian. Koff founded Ashley Koff Approved (AKA) to educate healthcare professionals, consumers, and the media about better quality food, dietary supplements and healthier lifestyle accessories. Koff’s latest book, Mom Energy, features a plan to help moms of all ages and stages get better energy.
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