Reboot your body and energy with a spring cleanse, it’s an easy way to buffer your health and protect your well-being for the coming months and beyond.

A supportive Cleanse…

•    Supports the elimination of toxins from the body
•    Increases energy and vitality
•    Supports healthy weight management
•    Relaxes the stress response, nervous system and calms the mind
•    Helps to re-establish one’s natural state of balance
•    Promotes optimal health and well-being

A spring cleanse is simply a way of lightening the load on the body and gently nourishing. These are my foundation tips for a spring cleanse, 28 days is the optimum length of time but anything over a week is better than nothing if this is not practical for you:

1. Avoid non-nourishing foods such as sugar, alcohol and white flour products. Replace with organic whole grains (wholegrain rice, amaranth, buckwheat, quinoa) and natural sugars- honey.

2. Drink more filtered water, at least 8 glasses although not with meals (this dilutes the digestive juices).  If you can, drink this water warm by using part boiled water and part cold water. This encourages the movement of the lymphatic system as well as promoting toxic build up in the skin, kidneys and gut.

3. Start the day with a mug of hot water and the juice of half a lemon or a capful of apple cider vinegar. This alkalizes the body (therefore supporting the breakdown of toxic residue and ensuing inflammation) and motivates the metabolism at the start of the day.

4. Use a body brush before you step into the shower each morning. Use upward strokes until you get the level of your heart and downward strokes from the head down to your heart. Don’t scrub, just gently brush. This also gets the lymphatic system moving. If you like baths, you could even run a bath with some Magnesium flakes or Epsom bath salts, to relax you.

5. Tap into the spring energy by cutting down on the heaviness of rich root vegetables and move towards summer with the lighter, high water content of spring produce. Choose seasonal veggies and ideally make simple vegetable soups, salads or stir fries.

Eat what’s ‘in’ this season. Fruit or veg in the afternoon with a handful or nuts and seeds such as pumpkin seeds and almonds. Dinner could be some delicious roast vegetables, fish of your choice or organic poultry.

6. Breakfast can be warm unsweetened stewed seasonal fruit with added spices such as ginger or cinnamon. Add some crushed linseeds and a drizzle of organic pouring yoghurt. Or, if the day is warm and sunny, a green smoothie of mixed berries, handful of spring greens, half an avocado, a dollop of raw honey and some almond or coconut milk.

7. Simple juices can support healthy cell rejuvenation. There is no need to buy an expensive juicer, you can simply add a gadget to your magi-mix if you have one or borrow one from a friend for a week. There are many Juice Bars available, focus on using beetroot, cabbage, celery, apple, pear, greens such as broccoli, spinach and chard have fabulous cleansing properties and are prolific at this time of year.

As a general rule, adding lemons, apple or pears will make even the most interesting vegetable medley taste palatable. Aim to have a juice at least once a day if the weather is warm, or vegetable soups if it is cold and damp.

8. Enjoy the outdoors and make sure you take long walks taking in fresh spring air and soak up the greater access to vitamin D rich sunshine.


Smoothies vs. Juices: Which Is Better?

A smoothie is a pureed beverage that can contain a wide variety of ingredients. It typically contains some type of liquid, like a fruit juice or milk, ice, vegetables, and fruits. But smoothies can range from plain to filled with superfoods like chia seeds or spirulina. Smoothies are made in a blender and contain all parts of the ingredients contained in the smoothie, including the insoluble fibre of the fruits and vegetables being used.

Juices don’t contain any fibre, as the process of juicing extracts the liquid and separates it from the fibre. Juices are made in a juicer and can contain any blend of a variety of fruits and vegetables. The texture is much thinner than a smoothie because it’s purely liquid.

Are Smoothies Healthy?

Smoothies are more satisfying and filling than juices because all the fibre is included and additional foods can be used to increase satiety even further. Foods like protein powders, ground flaxseed, chia seeds, can all help boost the protein, fibre, and healthy fat intake. When you include the necessary macronutrients, a smoothie can be a complete meal.

Many people wonder, “Are smoothies healthy for breakfast?” The answer is yes!

But what you put in the smoothie is what makes the difference between a healthy smoothie and a big glass of sugar!

To make a healthy and filling smoothie, you want to focus on including the following five things:

1. Leafy Greens
Greens are king in smoothies! There are many varieties to choose from and each one packs its own nutritious punch. Greens are nutrient-dense, meaning they have more nutrients than calories. Nutrients include vitamins and minerals like vitamin C and magnesium. When you add greens to your smoothie, it’s not only providing crucial vitamins and minerals, but also fibre.

Options for greens to add in your smoothies include but are not limited to kale, spinach, watercress, romaine, arugula, cilantro, parsley, and microgreens.

2. Fruit
Fruit is a source of fuel in smoothies, and contains essential nutrients like potassium, fibre, and vitamin C. Fruit is also a major source of glucose, which is necessary for proper brain function, as glucose is the main source of fuel for the brain. Brain fuel is important and including fruit in your breakfast smoothie will help feed your brain to tackle the day ahead.

Some great options for fruit to include in your smoothie are blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, blackberries, mango, banana, apple, pear, orange, pineapple, and papaya. Switch up what fruits you use to get the largest variety of vitamins and minerals as each fruit has its own unique health properties.

3. Protein
Protein is a must in smoothies, as it increases satiety, which helps prevent you from feeling hungry 30 minutes after you drink your smoothie. It would be a shame to make a big smoothie, drink it, and be starving shortly after. Protein helps eliminate this issue.

Research has shown that drinking a high-protein, high-fibre beverage protein are less hungry, had a decreased desire to eat, and a reduced subsequent food intake in comparison with those who consumed a low-protein, low-fibre beverage. Adding protein to your smoothies not only helps to keep you full but also provides amino acids that are necessary for energy balance and longevity.

There are many ways you can add protein to your smoothies. A clean protein powder like hemp protein, egg white protein, or pea protein are options. You can also incorporate different nuts and seeds like almonds, hemp, chia, or pumpkin seeds. Nut butters like sunflower seed butter or almond butter also provide protein.

4. Fiber
Added fibre in smoothies does wonders for digestive health and keeping your system regular. Fibre comes in two types: soluble and insoluble. Soluble fibre helps keep you fuller longer, and insoluble fibre is beneficial for cleansing the digestive tract and eliminating constipation. Fibre also plays a role in satiety, so your smoothie will keep you fuller longer.

Leafy greens and fruit have fibre, incorporate additional fibre by adding foods like celery, cucumber, ground flaxseed, chia seeds, or psyllium husk to increase the fibre content.

5. Fat
Fat in a smoothie? Yes! Omega-3 fatty acids have been found to play an important role in brain health, including reducing the risk for depression and neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s. Think of omega-3 fatty acids as brain fuel. And when you’re having a smoothie, it’s all about fuelling your body.

Foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids that you can use in your smoothies include avocados, walnuts, chia seeds, flax seeds, and hemp seeds.
When you incorporate leafy greens, fruit, protein, fibre, and fat in a smoothie, it becomes a nutrient-dense meal that can nourish your body and provide energy, which is exactly what you want in a meal! It can be consumed for breakfast or as a nutrient-dense snack.

Another benefit of smoothies is the fact that they are pureed. Blending breaks down the foods, so your teeth don’t have to. Imagine if you had all your smoothie ingredients in a big bowl. You’d have to chew everything and essentially puree it in your mouth before swallowing. When you have a smoothie, everything is already pureed for you, so it’s easier for the body to digest and absorb nutrients.

Are There Healthy Juices?
The process of juicing removes the fibre from the fruits and vegetables to bring you pure, unadulterated liquid nutrition. It extracts the juice from the pulp of the fruit or vegetable that is being used. Dietary fibre is essential for digestive health and an important part of your diet. Since juicing removes all the fibre, I don’t recommend a juice cleanse where you only consume juices. However, because juices are purely liquid, your body doesn’t have to process any of the fibre, fat, etc. like it does with a smoothie. The vitamins, minerals, and live enzymes present in the juice are absorbed into your body with minimal digestion required.

Juicing can be beneficial for individuals with compromised digestive systems. Studies have found that patients with gastrointestinal (GI) diseases like Crohn’s disease, diverticulitis, and ulcerative colitis, as well as those recovering from post-abdominal surgery  can benefit from a low-fibre diet for a short period of time. A low-fibre diet reduces the frequency of stools, which can be beneficial in beginning remission of GI diseases. Once remission begins, I recommend re-introducing dietary fibre as part of a healthy diet as it’s essential for overall digestive health.

However, you don’t have to have a gastrointestinal disease to benefit from juicing. Juicing is a great way to incorporate more vitamins and minerals into your diet in a way that is easy on the digestive system. Juices make a great snack or supplement to a meal.

What Are Healthy Juices?
Healthy juices include a mix of both fruit and vegetables. If you only juice fruit, it ends up being a tall glass of sugar water. You will get vitamins and minerals, but the sugar content of it will be high, so you want to use more vegetables than fruit when making a fresh juice.

When making your juice, including water-rich items as your base. They are more hydrating, use celery and cucumber as a wonderful base for a juice, and you can add a multitude of different fruits and veggies to it. Carrots also work well as a base and pair wonderfully with fresh ginger root.

Simple Juice Recipes
The following are some quick and easy juice recipes to try:
•    1 bunch celery, 1 cucumber, 1 apple
•    8 carrots, 1 orange, 2.5 cm piece of ginger root
•    1 bunch celery, 8 spears asparagus, 1 apple
•    6 carrots, 1 bulb fennel, 1 apple, 2.5 cm piece of ginger root, 1 lemon

Different Types of Juicers
Having some juice is easier if you have a juicer. The different types of juices are described here.
•    Centrifugal: This is the most affordable option when it comes to juicers. It’s a faster process but doesn’t provide as many benefits. Centrifugal juicers use very high speed to extract the juice, which can cause oxidation of nutrients. This process leads to loss of enzymes, so you don’t get as many nutrients from your juice. Centrifugal juicers also extract the least amount of liquid.

•    Masticating: This is the best option for an at-home juicer. It uses a slow pressure method to extract juice, so it preserves more nutrients and doesn’t oxidize as quickly as juice from centrifugal juicers. It’s pricier, but worth it if you want to get the most value.

•    Cold-pressed: Cold-pressed juicers are pro-level. They are expensive but provide the most benefits of any juicing method. Cold-pressed juicers grind the food and then press it to release the juices. This extracts the most nutrients and the results last up to four days with minimal nutrient-loss.


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