Spring is a time of cleansing, rejuvenation and getting some much needed sun. We become more active in the spring as we impatiently wait for winter to finally be over! But with that also comes the increase in symptoms associated with allergies and colds. Our immune system takes a hit because it too has to shift gears and prepare itself for the changes as we shift from one season to the next.
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Not only do we need to be concerned with our immune system and our ability to fight off allergies, colds and the various “bugs” that seem to go around, but we also should look at our diet. The winter months are usually heavier with proteins and fats as well as whole grains and legumes, but spring provides us with a bountiful of fresh fruits and vegetables, so eating habits should also shift as the season changes.
I found this really cool outline of foods that are naturally available in the spring. This will vary of course depending on your geographical location, but eating foods that are grown locally helps to ensure you’re getting the maximum nutrients available in that food. And when grown in the right conditions it’s much easier to control pests without the need for chemically derived pest controls.
We mustn’t forget about our home, it’s just as important in the “cleansing” season. Spring is a time to prepare for barbecues and family gatherings, preparing in the spring means less work in the summer. Here are some tips to add to your maintenance checklist:
Do spring cleaning and clean everything! Find products that are not made with harsh chemicals and have a hint of lemon or orange. Citrus smells are said to have a positive effect on the mood.
If possible, open the windows a few hours every day to air out the home and rid it of toxins built up over the winter months. If you have allergies, don’t forget to check your local air quality ratings.
If you have a ceiling fan, change the direction. You want the air to blow down in the warmer months to give the room a breeze and make it feel cooler. This is the opposite of running the fan in the winter.
Check around your windows and doors for air passing into the home. If needed, re-seal to help reduce the loss of cool air escaping the home during the summer months.
Check your air conditioner, inside and outside. Spray the outside component to remove the previous year’s buildup of dirt, debris, pet hairs and other things that can clog up your air conditioner and prevent it from operating at its maximum.
Check your home filters and change if needed. This doesn’t just include the filter for the furnace, but also for your purifiers, humidifiers, water filters and refrigerator filters. Look for filters that are specific to your home and environment.
Check your alarms to ensure they’re working properly; this could be a home alarm, smoke detector, carbon monoxide detector or any other alarms you’re using to keep your family safe.
Clean your dryer vents, a clogged vent can cause a fire as well as warm air to blow back into the area, eventually raising the temperature in the whole house. Cleaning it can help keep your home cooler.
Check your gutters for debris, spring brings a lot of rain and you don’t want your gutters to be clogged up. Clogged gutters can be problematic resulting in water overflowing and seeping into siding and foundations, which can lead to mold. Standing water also draws insects, especially mosquitos, which can create havoc on your overall health.
Spring storms can be harsh on a home’s exterior, check your roof flashing and shingles in preparation of what’s to come.
Clean up weeds and debris outside, enjoy the colorful flowers and green grass that come alive with spring. If you garden, this is a good time to start preparing for planting.
Use weed and feed products for your lawn that do not contain chemicals, help keep the environment safe. This is also true for pest control.