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According to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), Spring is a time of renewal and liver cleansing. In TCM, every season has a color, a flavor, a natural element, and an organ that is dominant during that time. Spring is the green season, when bitter flavors like dandelion greens are prominent, the wood element governs, and the liver and gallbladder are the organs that drive how we feel. This affects your moods, spine, joints, muscles, ligaments, tendons, eyesight, and even motivation level.
If your liver meridian (energy pathway) is in balance, you may be feeling a rush of creative energy and inspiration, with a new drive to achieve your goals. However, when your liver energy is stagnating, you may feel fearful, irritable, indecisive, angry, aggressive, frustrated, or downright stuck on your path in life. When these feelings linger, they are often accompanied by some level of depression and lack of motivation. At the same time, you may have achy joints, less flexibility, digestive issues, and dimming eyesight.
When we are in tune with what the seasons have to offer, it becomes effortless to cleanse and nourish the dominant organs. In Spring, the bitter green foods and herbs that are part of the wood element spring up from the ground and are excellent liver and gallbladder cleansers that also help to stimulate bile flow. A Spring liver cleanse doesn’t have to be harsh and drastic to be effective. Small daily changes to your routine can produce excellent results!
Incorporate these 7 ways to cleanse your liver for spring:
1. Sip hot lemon water every morning.
Start each day with a mug of hot water with the juice of ½ lemon, to help thin bile and tone liver function.
2. Drink cran-water daily.
In a 64-ounce (½ gallon) bottle, stir together 8 ounces 100% unsweetened cranberry juice and 56 ounces plain filtered water. Sip this antioxidant/phenol-rich cranberry juice and water mixture throughout the day to keep detox pathways clear.
3. Eat liver-loving foods.
Cruciferous veggies (broccoli, Brussels sprouts, kale, cabbage, and cauliflower) help to speed the breakdown of fat-storing toxins from the phase 2 detox pathway. Aim for two servings daily.
4. Go for leafy greens.
Young, leafy greens and sprouts, including the wild greens like dandelion, should abound in the daily diet. Be sure greens are organic, and if wild harvested, that they haven’t been sprayed with chemicals. One way to ensure you’re getting enough greens in daily is with Daily Greens Formula. I like to add boost to my morning smoothie with 11 organic greens in one scoop! You may also consider a supplement like Liver-Lovin Formula, which includes artichoke, taurine and chlorophyll to help move toxins, energize the system and boost bile production.
5. Lighten up the load.
Your liver and gallbladder need several light, small meals a day during cleansing to keep everything moving. Avoid large, heavy, rich meals during this time.
6. Get bitter to boost bile.
Douse your greens with a refreshing lime juice dressing, add lemon to your water, and eat your bitters. These all stimulate an increase in the flow of bile, which binds and escorts toxins out of the liver and gallbladder to be eliminated. Adequate bile production is also essential to balance the pH of the small intestine to help eradicate any unwanted invaders trying to disrupt the microbiome. This makes fermented vegetables like sauerkraut, kimchi, and curtido excellent accompaniments to your meals. And to further support bile production and flow, I recommend Bile Builder which contains choline, taurine, beet root, pancreatic lipase, ox bile, and collinsonia root. These carefully selected ingredients work together to help your body produce, thin out and move bile efficiently to aid in digestion and detoxification.
7. Drink Dandy Tea.
A fan favorite for years, a daily dose of dandelion root tea is a gentle, yet effective way to keep bile flowing and toxins moving out from the liver and gallbladder, while keeping blood sugars in balance and relieving digestive issues.
Freeing up these vital organs to do their jobs may be the single most important step you can ever take in improving your overall health. Detoxification is a very nutrient-dependent process so your body needs to be well-fortified in order to detox your liver effectively.
Last, but certainly not least, I highly recommend spring-cleaning your digestive tract with a colon cleanse. Spring renewal is all about “out with the old, in with the new,” and this applies to digestion and detoxing as well. Good health begins in the gut, and there’s no better way to get your bowels moving, flush accumulated toxins, clean out undigested food, and eliminate parasites and fungi than a cleanse. My Colon Cleansing Kit from UNI KEY Health contains all the key herbs and probiotics you need to cleanse the colon and get everything moving again. Healthy digestion leads to a healthy liver!