Dr. Frank Lipman is an integrative and functional medicine physician and the founder of Eleven Eleven Wellness in NYC. In his monthly column for R29, he talks about the latest health and wellness news; his favorite stay-healthy tips and tricks; plus answers your questions on how to be your healthiest, best self, every day.
With the warmer months approaching and spring cleaning on the brain, now is the perfect time to tidy up your eating habits. The transition into spring often sparks a desire to feel lighter, less cluttered, and to make space for fresh, new energy. Removing the foods that are a burden on your body is the ultimate way to feel more energetic. Although each individual person’s dietary needs vary based on age, activity levels, health concerns, and other factors, there are a few things that are helpful for everybody when it comes to cleaning up their diet.
Eat Food That Your Body Recognizes As Food
In order for every system in your body to function efficiently, you need to be adding nourishment that your body understands and can use. When your body doesn’t recognize something as food, that’s when inflammation (often the root cause of disease and weight gain) begins. Kicking processed foods to the curb is an important part of cleaning up your body, and this means eating foods close to nature with as few ingredients as possible. Processed foods are often high in refined sugars, artificial flavorings, chemicals, and other things that your body won’t recognize as food. Can you picture the food or ingredients you’re eating in nature? If you can’t pronounce it or it has a long ingredient list, skip it.
Eat Fresh Foods That Are In Season
Eating seasonally is a way to naturally support your body’s detoxification process. The foods that naturally grow in the springtime are designed to help our bodies get rid of excess. Eating fresh, leafy greens and the crisp vegetables you find at your farmer’s market will help transition you from a winter of heavy foods. Your body’s natural healing process will be promoted through this way of eating, so do a little digging and find out what’s in season near you.
Avoid Foods That Commonly Cause Inflammation
Decreasing inflammation in the body and restoring balance is essential for health and vitality. Inflammation can lead to digestive issues, a suppressed immune system, fatigue, and a host of other health problems. Foods that commonly cause inflammation include gluten, cow’s dairy, processed soy products, fat-free products, alcohol, sugar, and artificial sweeteners, to name a few. By sticking to fresh fruits and vegetables, good quality proteins, healthy fats, and gluten-free grains, you’ll be making a big difference in your health.
Since making over your diet can be a bit overwhelming at first, click through for sample meal plans, plus delicious recipes for some of my favorite healthy foods.
Photo: Via PACHD
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