Spring is supposed to be a time of renewal, which is probably why the season is such a popular time for the household projects and renovations that are collectively known as spring cleaning. But while you're sprucing up your home this spring, why not take the time to renew your health as well? Take a look at some good health tips for the whole family that are perfect for implementing during the spring season.
Start a Garden
Spring is a good time for planting, and a garden will beautify your home, but that's not the only reason that you should consider starting a garden this season. Gardening is also a great activity for your health. Getting out in the sun is a natural way to boost your body's production of vitamin D, which you need for a healthy immune system and well-regulated blood pressure, among other things. Just be sure to wear sunscreen so you don't burn.
Gardening also burns calories, so if you put on some extra pounds over the winter, this is a fun way to get rid of them. Light gardening activities, like weeding and planting, burn between 200 and 400 calories an hour. If you're doing heavy landscaping work, like moving rocks or hauling dirt, you can burn between 400 and 600 calories per hour.
Adjust Your Menu
It's natural to crave heartier, heavier foods in the winter season – you're trying to keep warm, after all, and when it's cold out, you tend to stay indoors and don't have as much to do. But now that spring is here, it's time to get active, and for that you need lighter meals that will help give you the energy to get out and enjoy the warmer weather and seasonal activities.
Take the red meat, heavy stews, and pastas off your menu rotation for the season. Spring is a good time for fish dishes, like tuna, salmon, tilapia, and striped bass. These seafood specialties are good for your brain and your energy levels. Spring vegetables include artichokes, beets, beans, asparagus, and radishes, as well as fresh herbs like basil. Berries like blueberries and strawberries are in season as well, and berry picking can be a healthy and tasty spring activity.
Spring Clean Your Medicine Cabinet
As long as you're cleaning the house this spring, make sure that you take the time to go through your medicine cabinet as well. You should dispose of any expired over-the-counter medications. Expired prescription medications, or old prescriptions that you don't intend to finish, can be tricky to dispose of. Look for prescription drug collection sites in your area. April 29th is National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, and the DEA offers a locater service on their website to help you find collection sites.
Medications that you do intend to keep should be stored in a cool, dry cabinet far out of the reach of children. The bathroom is not the best place for medicines – they'll stay fresh longer if they're not exposed to humidity. Spring is allergy season, so cleaning out your medicine cabinet now can leave you room to stock up on prescription or over-the-counter allergy medications that you may be needing soon.
The healthier you are, the more you'll enjoy all of the great things that the spring season has to offer. That's why it's worth taking the time to work on maintaining your good health this spring.