6 FRESH WAYS TO “SPRING CLEAN”
YOUR EATING HABITS THIS SEASON
YOUR EATING HABITS THIS SEASON
Well, Spring is finally underway! This is one of my favourite times of the year... when the cold, dark, snowy winter is nothing more than a distant memory, and we still have so much to look forward to in the long, sweet summer ahead. The weather is getting warmer, the days are getting longer and soon it will be time to show off that body you’ve been working so hard for all winter! Spring is also the perfect time to revamp and refresh your cooking and eating routine; it may have gotten a little stale over the last few months. Now is the perfect time to start taking advantage of all the fresh produce and ingredients this season has to offer, and start heating things up in the kitchen!
Here are a few tips to help you “Spring Clean” your kitchen and your nutrition plan this season.
1. REPLACE SUGARY SNACKS WITH FRESH FRUIT
If you’re someone who tends to have a sweet tooth, try replacing sugary snacks (like chocolate, cookies and candy) with fresh fruit. It’s delicious, naturally sweet, and this time of year there is a ton of variety. For extra crunch, try your favourite fruits frozen. Grapes and berries are a great choice! Just remember that natural sugars are still sugar. Be sure to account for them in your daily caloric intake.
2. SHOP AT LOCAL FARMER’S MARKETS
Another thing I love about this time of year is that I can do so much of my grocery shopping outside of the store. Pretty soon local farmers will begin selling everything from fresh fruits and vegetables, to eggs and cheese, to herbs and flowers. Take advantage and try adding some new ingredients to your repertoire. As an added bonus, you’ll be supporting local vendors.
*Fresh Tip* Grilling veggies on the BBQ, instead of roasting them in the oven, is a great way to give them a delicious charbroiled taste.
3. PLANT AN HERB GARDEN
Even if you don’t have a green thumb (I know I don’t...), growing your own herbs in the summer is so easy and affordable, and their fresh flavours can add a lot to your dishes. I always plant parsley, basil, rosemary, sage and mint. Last year, I even started growing my own tomatoes and banana peppers. All they need is sun and water. It’s not complicated, and having fresh herbs on hand is a quick and easy way to freshen up your favourite dishes
4. ACTUALLY SPRING-CLEAN YOUR KITCHEN
Spring is the season of renewal. It’s the perfect time to clean out your fridge, pantry and kitchen cupboards. Get rid of anything you no longer use, give it a nice deep clean, and organize your shelves and drawers. After all, when your space is tidy and uncluttered, so is your mind. You are more likely to make smart choices when your head is clear.
5. MASTER A FEW GO-TO HEALTHY SNACKS FOR BBQ’S AND PATIO PARTIES
As the weather gets warmer, the invitations to backyard BBQ’s will start pouring in. Often times, these get-togethers include foods and beverages that are high in calories, fat and sodium. Being armed with a few healthy snack recipes (like homemade hummus with fresh vegetables, grilled pineapple, roasted edamame or chickpeas, or kale chips) that you can bring to the party is a great idea. That way you know there will always be at least one or two healthy options on the table.
6. PLAN AHEAD FOR CHEAT DAYS ON BUSY WEEKENDS
Just like wedding season or the Christmas holidays, patio season means endless eating, drinking and general over-indulging. Planning ahead is the best way to stay on track and not play the never-ending “I’ll start on Monday” game. When you know you will be attending back-to-back functions and parties, choose one as your cheat-meal. Enjoy it. And stay true to your nutrition plan at the others.