I hope this note finds you well. As the nutritionist on deck for Zenberry, I wanted to check in with you and see how you’re doing and if you’ve started adjusting your food and lifestyle to meet the season.
You know that living a life close to nature, circadian rhythms and seasonal variation is a healthier way to live. Yet, how do we make it work when we live in big cities? They are congested and polluted and we have overly busy schedules. I’ve really worked hard at it for the past decade to recover my health. When we become sick, we’ve basically gone beyond the limit of our immune system tolerance. The change of season is a vulnerable time for our immune system. The gut flora is mutating. When the glass is full of stressors, whether environmental, mental or dietary, the immune barrier is at risk to be breached.
Transition From Winter to Spring
Restoration of immune tolerance and keeping the glass from getting too full is paramount. Here are a few dietary and lifestyle tips you can try to put in place this month. They are soothing and detoxifying for your body. Let me know your thoughts:
- Connect with nature once a week. Visit a park for a few hours or get out of the city for an afternoon. Visit a state park, beach or local trail.
- Bring nature inside of you by incorporating 4 servings of dark leafy greens, grasses, algae in your diet daily. The bitter, pungent and astringent tastes are the tastes of Spring. They help the body rid itself of mucus. Consider reducing sugar, salt and oils. Zenberry Holy Frappe, Vanilla Chai and Greens contain our concentrated super greens blend. Each will give your body these bitter, astringent and pungent (in the case of Zenberry Vanilla Chai) tastes. Each drink (2 TBSP) counts as one serving of greens. I drink a glass of Zenberry early morning with coconut water or home-made almond milk before my early morning workouts. I’ll have a Zenberry drink again as a mid-afternoon snack (usually with just water or nut milk). I will often make it as part of a hearty smoothie instead of eating dinner at times when I am not hungry enough or I get home to late.
- Exercise more vigorously than in the Winter to release mucus, congestion, increase lung capacity. Lose the winter fat and boost your immune system. Go to the sauna for 30 min (take 1 or 2 breaks). Exercise helps detoxify the body, increases red blood cells, hence oxygenate your body, and it makes your Killer T Cells more aggressive). Did you know that there are 10 times more toxins in sweat than in feces and urine? In fact, one reason why we think Shane has not yet gotten sick from his work at the WTC on 9/11 (and the months following) is that he’s always exercised vigorously before, during and since. For about 6 years, his sweat was bright orange and staining his light-colored workout clothes. Eventually, the orange stains stopped so we are hoping that the toxins were purged and he will remain healthy. Work your way up to 60 min of physical activity daily.
- Spring Clean. The next two recommendations are about lowering toxicity. Lower your home’s toxicity levels by, going forward, only purchasing eco-friendly furniture that does not off-gas toxic fumes, replace your detergents, beauty products, cleaning products with green products. Check the Environmental Working Group Skin Deep database for beauty products and EWG Home Guide.
- Improve the quality of the food you eat, by choosing organic (at the very least the Dirty Dozen should never be bought if not organic), grass-fed beef, pastured raised kitchen and eggs, wild caught fish (steer clear of predator fishes especially tuna, swordfish, shark. Even canned tuna). Check the EWG guide to pesticides sprayed and clean foods.
This Spring, embrace an active anti-inflammatory lifestyle. Move, and drink your Zenberry!
In the Spring appetite naturally goes down, contrasting with the Winter. EAT LESS. You may not even feel hungry at dinner (it happens to me often in April), in which case, skip it. Or simply make a low fat low sugar Zenberry smoothie. You’ll sleep better and wake up more energized.
Check our Instagram page and this blog for seasonal recipes.
Yours in Health and Happiness,