Thursday, March 22, 2012

Spring Cleaning from the Inside

It’s Spring and time for Spring Cleaning so let’s being with you. When your body is clean, free of the toxins that build up from water, food and air, your energy will improve dramatically. So before you tackle those big Spring cleaning jobs, start with a body cleanse and feel your energy soar.

You’ll want to 'take small steps' so you don’t get frustrated and quit. This process is also a great way to jump-start weight loss

Keep is simple.
Eat smaller, lighter meals full of vegetables.
Eat often - don't let yourself get hungry.

First - look at what you eat on a daily basis. Then pick one food type that you know you should eat less and cut it from you diet. Yes - I said one. Remember we are taking small steps. I want you to see success and feel good about what you have accomplished. So be kind to yourself and start slow. [example - cut sugar, or white flour]

Next - let's give your body something it craves so you don't feel hungry all the time. Vegetables are the key here. "Yuck" you say? They don't have to be bland or mushy. Think crunchy, sweet, delicious - or steamy, roasted, savory, exotic... Go to a store that has great produce like your local food coop or farmer's market and pick up lots of different colored vegetables.

Root Vegetables are great roasted in the oven with olive oil and/or butter and seasonings. They also make great soups and stews. [rutabagas, carrots, yams, sweet potatoes, parsnips, beets, onions, turnips, etc] Try something new - experiment and have fun!

Cruciferous Vegetables are wonderful for their cancer inhibiting properties. They are best eaten cooked because the raw form has a property that can negatively affect thyroid production. So steam them, stir-fry, use in soups or add to your roasted root vegetables.

Arugula, Bok choy, Broccoli, Brussels sprouts,Cabbage, Cauliflower, Chard, Chinese cabbage, Collard greens, Daikon, Kale, Kohlrabi, Mustard greens, Radishes, Rutabagas, Turnips, Watercress, Broccoli Rabe

Salad Vegetables that taste good raw include leafy greens like lettuce, spinach,and kale as well as tomatoes, celery, carrots, peppers, cucumber, radishes, asparagus, etc. Make salads easy and fun by spending some time every few days preparing salad vegetables in advance and storing in the fridge. Wash your veggies well in a mixture of cold water and vinegar. Then rinse thoroughly. Store greens wrapped in a clean towel then in a plastic container (I use a sweater box) in the fridge. Chop celery, carrots, peppers, etc and store in separate containers so all you have to do is grab a few containers and throw a great salad together.

Keep toppings fresh and healthy too. Olive oil, fresh lemon juice and seasonings is a wonderful dressing. Yogurt, honey and mustard is another favorite. Sunflower seeds, walnuts, almonds or pecans add crunch without the fat of croutons. Avoid prepared dressings, dried fruits, imitation bacon bits, or other canned toppings. Keep it fresh and simple.

Drinking Your Veggies -
For the fastest detox you'll want to Juice your vegetables. There is so much information out there on the benefits of juicing that I won't go into it here. I do recommend the Jack Lalanne Power Juicer for the best value. Carrots, beets, celery, cucumbers and organic apples yield some of the most healing and detoxing juices. Mix them all together or drink separately - experiment and have fun.

If you eat vegetables all day for a few days, your body will thank you. On day 4 add some protein - just keep it healthy and start slow (3 oz with one meal). Day 5 add some grains - maybe oatmeal with rice milk for breakfast, some rice cakes with soup for lunch or brown rice with stir fry for dinner.

I think you'll find that this is much easier than you thought. The food tastes great and you really could live this way. Now you'll have the energy you need for the Spring chores and all the summer fun.

Be well always ~

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