Monday, March 31, 2008

Sweet Spring ~ Seasonal Eating

Well, Spring may have sprung, but our bodies may still be adapting. Despite the "springing forward" of the clocks three weeks ago, the weather is still in a state of flux, so us humans may be a bit confused. If you're familiar with seasonal eating, you may have already noticed this change in your appetite; instead of the heavier, heartier and warmer foods of winter, you may be suddenly craving something lighter to eat or feel the need for a detox of sorts. No wonder Spring is a time of cleaning; not just for our homes, but for our bodies. Spring is an important time for the eating of greens, a food group that most Americans don't get enough of. Bitter greens like arugula, endive, dandelion greens and radicchio are great this time of year. Afraid to step out of your comfort zone? Just gradually add in some of these greens to your spinach or lettuce based salad (arugula is a favorite of mine). Dandelion greens can be eaten cooked or raw and can be found on the menu in Greek restaurants this time of year. Since this is a time of cleansing, dandelion greens are great because they are known to cleanse the liver and kidneys, creating balance in the body. Dandelion greens are actually a traditional Spring food in many cultures.

Another way to get in some greens is wheatgrass. A shot of wheatgrass is sweet and delicious. And very cleansing! A little hesitant to try it? Well, add some spinach to your fruit smoothie and get some greens in that way; the fruit sweetens it and you still get the added benefit of the iron, vitamins A, C & E (antioxidants) and other nutrients.

For Spring eating, I also recommend that people limit the amount of dairy they consume, if not avoid it altogether. During the winter, your body was drying out. To counteract that, you ate heavier, more protein-laden foods. By the end of a long winter season, your body has dried out and thus created excessive mucus. Come Spring, Mother Nature begins creating moisture, as mud and water becomes prominent, to help germinate seeds and prepare for the growing season. If you continue to eat the same way in Spring as you did in winter, you risk creating excess moisture and mucus, which results in congestion and exacerbates problems such as colds and allergies. Dairy contributes to this, thus it should be limited or altogether avoided. Since Mother Nature is softening and opening up this time of year, so are our bodies, which makes it the perfect opportunity to cleanse and detox.

In winter, you may have also opted for more sweet and comforting foods as well. And now you might find you can't manage the sweet cravings anymore. If you want to have a Sweet Spring, but want to better manage your sweet cravings, please attend one of my Sugar Solutions Workshops and find out ways to get back on track and tame that sweet tooth. Too many sweets can sap your energy and cause many other issues, including sleep deprivation, fatigue, weight gain and irritability. Upcoming Sugar Solutions workshops include:

Thursday, April 10th at Boston Athletic Club (South Boston)

Wednesday, April 23rd at Healthworks Back Bay (Boston) - CURRENTLY FULL; contact Healthworks front desk, to be added to the Wait List

Monday, April 28th at Shape Up Personal Training (Cambridge)

Thursday, May 15th at Boston Athletic Club (South Boston)

These workshops start at 6:00 PM and are about 75 minutes long. These are FREE to attend, but you must pre-register, as space is very limited!

For more information, please visit the EVENTS tab on my website at or by CLICKING HERE

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