It’s finally looking like spring is starting to arrive. With the warmer weather often comes a renewed sense of vigor and purpose. It’s the perfect time of year to de-clutter the closets and clean out the garage. It’s also a great time of year to do some Spring-cleaning for your health.
1. Clean out your pantry – Spend some time looking at ingredient labels and nutrition facts of the foods you have in your pantry. Chances are, there are some less-than-desirable items stored away in there. Take pride in throwing out, or donating, items that aren’t doing your health any favours when those evening cravings hit. Sugary, processed foods should be the first to go!
2. Clean out your freezer – The freezer can be a great place to store pre-made meals so that you have some quick go-to’s when you’re in a rush or can’t make it to the grocery store. However, often things get left in there for far too long. Ground meats should only be kept for 3 months, and soups and stews should only be kept for 2 months. Read more about the freezer-life of your foods here http://www.foodsafety.gov/keep/charts/storagetimes.html.
3. Clean out behind your furniture – Dust and other allergens can build up almost anywhere. These can worsen spring allergies, asthma, and eczema. It’s important to do a full, deep clean behind all your couches and other furniture, especially beds and dressers. A wet mop is all you need for hardwood, and consider renting a steam cleaner for carpeting. Do this early in the day to allow airborne dust to settle before you sleep there at night.
4. Clean out your mood – Many people develop the winter “blahs”, where the mood gets stuck in a rut. Take a few moments to ask yourself “how am I feeling?”, and really be honest about your answer. If there is some lingering blah leftover from the winter, any guilt or grudges that you’re holding, it’s time to throw those aside. You deserve a fresh start this spring, so focus on the positive and let go of everything else.
5. Clean out your diet – Now is the time of year to do a cleanse to jump-start your diet and get yourself back on track. Consider doing a simple dietary overhaul with something like the whole-foods challenge, going paleo for a month, or simply eliminating all “white” foods (white flour, sugar, rice, etc.). Talk to your naturopathic doctor to learn about a more personalized, in-depth cleanse that’s going to be safe and beneficial for you.