Haven’t these last few days been wonderful- the sun feels warm and the air has that distinctive scent of spring. This is the time of year when many of us begin to think of spring house cleaning or spring yard work. Anything to get us outside, or the outside inside.


Okay, so much for the house and the yard- what about some spring cleaning for our bodies? We’ve had a couple of seasons of eating heavier foods, meats, grains, sweet things from all the holidays, and the pounds that sometimes go with it- time to clean house.


Nature has a wonderful way of handing us what we need just when we need it.  An example is the many of our prolific springtime weeds that actually make perfect spring tonics to cleanse and flush the liver and blood of excesses.


Here are my springtime favorites:

Dandelion is one of the best spring tonics for cleansing the blood and the liver. Fresh young dandelion greens in salads, steamed or in light soups not only cleanse they taste good. Dandelion is also good for the digestion, helps rid the body of excess salt and water, and is good for iron deficiency anemia. The root is also effective especially for balancing blood sugar.


Burdock: Revered as nature’s best blood purifier. Today, herbalists still recommend this herb for its diuretic action- increasing the flow of urine, promotes sweating, and relieves the soreness of arthritis and rheumatism.


Plantain: Flushes the kidneys and helps with the secretion of uric acid. Its active ingredients have anti-inflammatory and anti allergic properties.


Parsley:  Claimed to be the third most nourishing plant on the planet. Parsley is a course in vitamin therapy all by itself, containing vitamin A, more vitamin C per volume than an orange, several B vitamins, calcium and iron. Use this herb in very small amounts only.


Red Clover: Traditionally the blossoms of this plant were used as a tonic taken in the spring to promote good health and peace of mind.  Traditional medicine is currently studying red clover for possible use in the treatment of tumors and cancers.


If you use dandelions from your yard be sure they have not been chemically sprayed. Herbs are best taken at least thirty minutes before food. All of the above herbs can be purchased dry and made into teas or taken as tinctures- a liquid preserved with alcohol. Do not mix high-powered medicines with herbs. Herbs are medicines too.


So this spring when you’re cleaning up the house and yard don’t over look your body’s needs for house cleaning as well. Herbs work best when combined with a healthy diet of whole foods and pure water. Till next time, Rebecca