Nutrition Insight: Cooling Things Down As Spring Warms Up


Cadence team member and registered Holistic Nutritionist Erin Riddell shares some cool (literally) nutrition tips as we give spring a big warm welcome.


A big welcome to spring! It's a time that’s full of energy and visual transitions happening everywhere, but do you ever think of the transition your body goes through?

It's in spring that our bodies want to lighten up and shed the heaviness of Winter.  Spring’s energy gives us what we need to truly fulfill our goals, plans and dreams. Really, it’s a season of renewal. Along with that, our bodies naturally want to detox.

Did you cringe when you heard the word ‘detox’? I don’t blame you. Detox has most definitely gotten a rep as an aggressive process that's used for a quick diet fix. The truth is, our bodies naturally detox on a daily basis.

The foods we eat assist in this daily activity which is why spring is an important time to make sure our bodies are getting what it needs. If we continually feed our body the same way as winter-heavy meals, or processed/refined foods in general, it will be using too much energy to digest our foods and not enough for spring cleaning.

As mentioned, spring is a time to lighten up, meaning transitioning meals from stews and chilis to more salads, raw vegetables, seeds and sprouted grains. Spring is also a time to introduce or increase sour and bitter flavors into our diet.

Why you ask? Sour flavours having a cooling quality (yin property) on the body which will help with the 'lightening'. Bitter flavours again have a cooling property, help with energy within the body and combat inflammation. There’s a reason soups, stews and chilis are eaten in the winter: to keep us warm. As the weather begins to get warmer, our bodies don’t need assistance in keeping warm - it needs assistance in cooling down.

Some examples of Sour and Bitter flavors:

  • Sour flavours: Lemon, Lime, Grapefruit
  • Bitter Flavours: Rye, Romaine, Greens, Quinoa, Asparagus, Alfalfa

On top of cleaning up your diet in spring, it should also be a time to adjust eating patterns to get the most out of what you're putting into it. Instead of eating 1 - 2 large meals, try having 4-5 smaller meals a day. These meals should be nutrient packed, hence why salads and raw vegetables are on the rise in spring.

If you're sitting there thinking “raw vegetables are boring”, give the recipe below a try. It will most definitely prove you wrong!

Raw Mexican Cauliflower Salad with Romaine Wraps

  • Half head of cauliflower-cut into florets
  • 3 carrots-roughly chopped
  • Green onions-roughly chopped
  • 2-3 cloves garlic (if you love garlic use 3)
  • 2 avocados
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 4-5 romaine leaves
  • 2 cups cooked Quinoa (cook according to package)
  • ¼ cup sunflower seeds
  • ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
  • Cumin to taste (approx. 2-3 tbsp)
  • Sea salt to tast
  • Pepper to taste
  • Chili powder to taste (approx. 2-3 tbsp)
  • Garlic powder-to taste (approx. 2-3 tbsp)

**If you like spicy foods, add cayenne pepper**

  1. Add cauliflower pieces to food processor and process until small pieces (not pureed). Once done add to large mixing bowl.
  2. Add carrots, green onions, garlic and seeds to food processor and process until small pieces (not pureed). Add to same bowl as cauliflower.
  3. Add cooked quinoa to bowl. Mix well.
  4. Add avocados and lime juice to food processor and process until becomes a puree. Once done, add to mixing bowl and mix well with other ingredients.
  5. Add cumin, chili powder, garlic salt, salt and pepper-mix well.
  6. Add more spices depending on your taste preference.
  7. Use romaine leaves as a shell (wash and pat dry with paper towel) and add amount of mixture you’d prefer to it

This recipe makes a large portion so it’s an easy lunch for the entire week. Enjoy!

PIC ER headshot 02-25-14  Connect with Erin on Twitter (@NaturalH_RHN) to stay up on nutrition tips, good reads, great recipes and more!