Spring Cleaning & Detoxification: The Unexpected Duo We're Loving This Season
I don't know about you, but spring cleaning has been top of mind for me these past few weeks. The urge to donate old clothes, reorganize my environment, and deep clean those hard-to-reach places in my home (you know the ones) is strong, but my tangible belongings aren't the only things I want to clear out.
After a long, cold winter, I'm ready for a fresh start in every area of my life. I've felt called to go for runs, drink more water, join a hot yoga studio, eat more fruits and vegetables, take hot Epsom salt baths, and shed habits and beliefs that are no longer serving me.
It wasn't until I read about the energy of kapha season (aka spring) in Seasonal Self-Care Rituals: Eat, Breathe, Move, and Sleep Better―According to Your Dosha by Susan Weis-Bohlen that I realized how potent this desire for detoxification truly is.
What is Ayurveda?
If you're not familiar with Ayurveda yet, it's an ancient Indian practice based in the belief that holistic health and wellness require the balance of three different "health types" called doshas. The three doshas (vata, pitta, and kapha) are present in everyone in different amounts, each holding different energies.
What is kapha season?
These doshic energies align with different seasons—summer holds the hot and fiery energy of pitta, winter embodies the cold and dry energy of vata, and kapha's wet, heavy, earthy nature manifests in spring.
According to Ayurveda, kapha season is all about clearing out the stagnant energy that has built up through the vata season and preparing our minds, bodies, and spirits for the rest of the year. If we mirror Mother Earth and harness the energy of rebirth, renewal, and rejuvenation during the spring, we can continue the year with a cleansed body and clear mind.
Why detoxification is so important in the spring.
We're constantly exposed to environmental toxins like BPA, heavy metals, pesticides, and PFAs in our food, water, air, personal care products, cleaning supplies, and more. Over time (and especially during vata season), these toxins build up in our bodies and can tax our detoxification pathways.
After hibernating through the winter, kapha season encourages us to move our bodies, get back outside, rebuild healthy habits, and detoxify our internal and external environments.
5 ways to cleanse this kapha season.
Here are a few ways we can cleanse our mind, body, and spirit during the spring:
- Prioritize movement. Breaking a sweat supports our natural detox pathways. Try incorporating 30 minutes of exercise each day to invigorate the body.
- Eat kapha-balancing foods. Embrace the fresh feelings of spring by adding bitter greens, fresh fruits, cruciferous veggies, and lighter grains like quinoa and millet to your meals. Swap heavier foods like sugar, dairy, meat, and wheat for plant-based options when possible.
- Up your antioxidant intake. Antioxidants help bolster the detoxification system and combat oxidative stress. Adding antioxidant-rich foods (like cruciferous vegetables and berries) and a targeted, high-quality detox supplement that includes antioxidant ingredients (like mbg's daily detox+, which features glutathione plus four other antioxidant nutrients and bioactives) to your daily routine is a great way to support your detox pathways with daily intention.*
- Clear stagnant energy from your mind. If you've fallen out of routine with your mindfulness practices during the winter, kapha season is a great time to reintroduce them. Consider incorporating journaling, meditation, or mindful walks into your morning or evening rituals.
- Practice abhyanga. Abhyanga is a full-body self-massage with warm oil that helps stimulate the lymph and promote detoxification. (Bonus, it's a great way to show your body some love.)
Prioritizing detoxification this kapha season will set your body, mind, and spirit up for success for the rest of the year! Incorporate these detoxifying practices into your daily routine this spring to recalibrate your energy and feel renewed.
Morgan Chamberlain is a supplement editor at mindbodygreen. She graduated from Syracuse University with a Bachelor of Science degree in magazine journalism and a minor in nutrition. Chamberlain believes in taking small steps to improve your well-being—whether that means eating more plant-based foods, checking in with a therapist weekly, or spending quality time with your closest friends. When she isn’t typing away furiously at her keyboard, you can find her cooking in the kitchen, hanging outside, or doing a vinyasa flow.