Simple Steps to Start Cleansing

Spring and Fall are the perfect times for a mild Ayurvedic cleanse to reduce toxins (ama) from the previous season. It’s like a tune-up and oil change for the body, mind, and soul.

(Download my Ayurvedic Spring Cleanse Tips and Guidebook below.)

Mark off on your calendar when you can take 3-7 (or more) days to create time/space for the process. What can you say “no” to? Where can you create some boundaries to take care of YOU?

Look at it in 3 phases.


The “easing in” process allows a smoother transition into the “deeper cleanses”. The cold turkey approach often is too much for the nervous system to take in and can lead to giving up or getting frustrated. Slow and easy wins the race. 😉

• Eliminate or cut back on the obvious – caffeine, sugar, alcohol, processed foods, wheat, and white flour.
• Add in sipping hot water throughout the day. This starts to loosen toxins in and between the cells for removal.
• Dial up your self-care practices: get more sleep, move your body and breath daily, meditate, and spend more time outside connecting with nature. Pamper yourself with self-massage using oils, taking a bath using essential oils, or whatever feels nourishing and relaxing.
• Commit to preparing your foods if you regularly order take-out. Stock your kitchen with whole, fresh, seasonal and if possible local and organic foods.


After a few days, you should feel ready to commit to the deeper cleanse and diet change. That might be a mono diet (classic Ayurvedic cleanse of kitchari- recipe below) or a simple, whole-food diet including one-pot meals, kitchari, cleansing soups, smoothies, juices, and more liquids.

• A mono-diet consists of eating kitchari (a rice and mung bean dish with Ayurvedic spices that is served warm and with seasonal vegetables if desired). Recipe below.👇

• Eat kitchari for breakfast, lunch, and dinner for three to seven days to rest the digestive system. If you need some variety, spice up your breakfast kitchari with cinnamon, ginger, and cardamom. For lunch and dinner, whip up savory versions that appeal to your palate using turmeric, mustard seeds, fenugreek, cumin, coriander, hing, and fennel. Using the spices of your heritage is also a nice way to experience this dish. Kitchari is a complete protein but can require some variety in spicing so as not to become too monotonous.

• When we commit to a mono diet, we allow ourselves to really look at our own beliefs around food. For instance, you’ll start to notice if you use food for comfort, to fill space, and for feelings of boredom. Do you eat out of habit but not true hunger? You’ll notice if you let other people determine how YOU nourish you. Are you using food to “numb out” and not experience your deeper needs and feelings?

Food is a HUGE topic, and many people use it for many reasons besides nourishment. Just get curious and ask yourself if it’s something that you want to perpetuate or possibly look at the deeper issues.


Take your time emerging and incorporating other foods. Notice how you FEEL as you slowly introduce other foods into your body. What has possibly cleared – mucus, weight, feelings of lethargy, brain fog, digestive discomfort… or other issues? As you add foods back in, notice your bodi’s reaction. Maybe the caffeine habit can be replaced with green tea or the nightly glass of wine with a bath or going to bed earlier? All food for thought. Again, be curious.

• The whole point is that you’ve given your digestion a break from working overtime and processing, assimilating, and eliminating hard-to-digest foods and toxins. Take your time easing back in and simply notice the potential effects – constipation, bloating, gas, skin issues, stress, loose stools, stomach upset, and heartburn…to name a few.

Boost your digestive fire by taking in foods with rejuvenating substances (such as ginger) and ferments (sauerkraut) before every meal as you slowly integrate more robust foods into your diet.

• As you transition back into everyday eating (3-5 days) and your elimination returns to normal—drink one cup of ginger tea or eat one or two slices before each meal. Use this recipe: peel and slice one inch of ginger in a small jar, then add a teaspoon or two of fresh lime juice and a couple of pinches of salt.

• If you’re coming out of the kitchari mono-diet, slowly reintroduce foods that are warming, easy to digest, and home-made ie, steamed seasonal veggies, bean-based soups, and stews.

• As your digestive system strengthens, add other proteins to your meals, such as tofu, chicken soup, or poached eggs. Keep your menu simple with only a few new items at each meal. For breakfast, stick with room temperature, simple smoothies made with ONLY food-based ingredients (fresh fruits and tons of greens- kale, dandelion, chard, spinach). Cooked apples/ pears with quinoa or oats are an easy-to-digest and nourishing breakfast option. Add digestive and yummy spices such as cardamom, ginger, and cinnamon.

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