Healthy Spring-Inspired Eating: Embrace the coming season with a delicious and detoxifying Hydrating Cucumber Pear Smoothie
Perhaps you’ve been keeping a food journal and discovering which foods aren’t serving your health goals, or maybe you’re just ready to leave the heavier foods of fall and winter behind (for the most part). Spring is a wonderful time to reassess your eating habits, do a (bodily) spring cleaning, and recalibrate yourself for the warmer weather headed our way.
Indeed, many of my own food epiphanies have happened during the spring. One spring day last year, I found myself sitting in the grassy field by our apartment in Oregon. With a copy of Eat Pretty in my hands and the breeze in my hair, I recommitted to eating simple, whole, and fresh vegan foods. Although I’d been a vegan for a while, I felt myself longing for the most basic foods: steamed veggies, large salads with splash of olive oil and lemon juice, and homemade green juice, among others!
The desire for fresh, simple food led this Steamed Asparagus Spring Salad.
There’s nothing as revitalizing as fresh green juice!
Strange as it may seem, eating light, fresh foods has always been just as comforting for me as indulging in comfort foods—although sometimes I’m skeptical of this myself. There’s nothing like a sweet fruit smoothie to make you feel that the world is going to be okay.
So let’s get ready for spring and feel (way better than) okay together.
5 Tips for Healthy Spring-Inspired Eating:
1. Eat fresh, hydrating foods. The produce section is always your friend; use the warming weather as an excuse to get friendlier with it. Be bold and try less common things like jicama, orange beets, or purple carrots. While you’re at it, fill your cart with the staples–and lots of them: apples, pears, cucumbers—anything that boasts a natural, juicy goodness.
2. Stick to simple foods (i.e. unprocessed). Healthy staples like brown rice, tempeh, quinoa, beans, and lentils can complement your light and juicy produce without weighing them (or you) down. These high-fiber foods also support your body’s natural detoxification process, which lead us to…
3. Detox—gently (unless you’re really craving a serious juice cleanse, of course. I wont stop you!). Introducing cleansing foods into your diet is a lovely way to welcome the spring and get ready for summer. Winter can certainly weigh us down—physically and emotionally. Doing a detox, even if that just means swapping a green smoothie for morning cereal, can help us feel lighter—in every way possible.
4. Eat from your kitchen. I love dining out as much as the next person, but it’s no mystery that restaurants are often a little heavy on oils and portion sizes. Creating meals from your own kitchen not only allows you to control what’s on your plate, it also brings you closer to the food itself. Through washing, chopping, mixing, and cooking, your hands are involved in almost every step of putting the food on the table (and more steps if you grew the food yourself!). The smell of fresh basil on my fingertips makes me feel like a true earth goddess (which I’m totally not IRL)!
5. Don’t forget your beverages. Spring is the perfect time to try new herbal teas (lavender-camomile, anyone?), take a much-needed break from coffee (I confess!), and hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! The above tips can certainly apply to our beverages: stick to the fresh stuff, avoid anything too processed, incorporate detoxifying ingredients (like lemon juice, fresh ginger, and antioxidant-rich herbal teas–mmm), and, when possible, brew, blend, or juice in your own kitchen in your own style.
How will you define your diet this spring?
Related: 15 Best Healing Foods
Photos: Peaceful Dumpling, Mary Hood