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3 gut-friendly ways to refresh your kitchen for spring, according to Lily Kunin


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The arrival of days with 12 hours of sunlight is a signal for many of us to revamp our homes and routines. In the kitchen, that means scrubbing away months-old tomato stains on the stovetop. But there might be an additional step you’re missing: remixing what’s in your fridge—and consequently, your gut.

“Spring is associated with budding, blossoming, and rebirth. Whether we recognize it our not, our bodies are intuitively synced with nature’s cycles,” says Lily Kunin, Well+Good Council member and holistic health coach. “Each season symbolizes a different purpose and is governed by specific organs in the body. According to Chinese medicine, the organs that govern spring’s upward and outwardness are the liver and gallbladder.”

“Our bodies are intuitively synced with nature’s cycles.”

Swapping that roasted rainbow veggie bowl you’ve been eating since November for sweet asparagus dishes and green smoothies (AKA the best of spring’s harvest) can help your stomach ease into the new season.

“Our bodies often crave warmer, denser foods in the winter months and lighter, more watery foods in spring and summer,” Kunin says, explaining cravings for green salads ATM. “The food we eat nourishes and energizes us, so we need to ensure that we fill our vehicles with the proper fuel.”

And for her gut, the Clean Food Dirty City blogger loves kombucha, especially Health-Ade Kombucha’s Pink Lady Apple brew.  “It’s a delicious beverage that refreshes while simultaneously resetting my system and bolstering my immunity,” Kunin she says of the probiotic-packed sip.

Keep reading for Kunin’s spring refresh tips, plus the refreshing kombucha mocktail she’ll be drinking all season long.

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Lily Kunin herbal teas
Photo: Lily Kunin

1. Flush out your system

A balanced gut typically means a happy body and mind—which is why Kunin starts her spring refresh with her stomach. “If we create a strong, sturdy foundation in our guts, this will support our entire being,” explains Kunin.

In addition to taking a daily probiotic supplement and drinking deep-green juice (you’ll find parsley, dandelion root, spinach, and kale in her glass), she adds one essential step to her routine once it’s warm.

“When winter ends, I like to focus on bolstering these organs and flushing my body of any lingering ‘debris’ as part of a gentle, internal cleaning,” Kunin says. Her hydrating staples include kombucha, purified-water with lemon and apple-cider vinegar, and herbal teas.

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Health-Ade Sweet Thorn
Photo: Health-Ade Kombucha™

2. Load up on fermented everything

Fermented staples in your fridge (sauerkraut, miso, and kimchi) do a lot more than add umami to mealtime. These probiotic-rich foods improve the amount of good bacteria and bolster digestion.

Grabbing a bottle (or let’s be real, a whole case) of Health-Ade Kombucha in classic flavors like Ginger-Lemon, Pink Lady Apple, and Cayenne Cleanse is an easy way to score probiotics.

“I sip on kombucha alone as a snack, with a big salad, or mix it into cocktails and mocktails for a healthy treat,” Kunin says, counting Health-Ade’s Reishi-Chocolate Kombucha (with adaptogenic mushroom powder) and Sweet Thorn (with hawthorn berry, said to boost immunity) as her fave flavors. “It’s exciting to see how Health-Ade continues to evolve and experiment and incorporate ingredients.”

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Lily Kunin fermented foods
Photo: Lily Kunin

3. Push reset on your fridge

For Kunin, the winter-to-spring transition is the time to declutter and make way for your first farmer’s market haul. “I ritualistically deep clean my refrigerator using a natural cleaning solvent to wipe down all the cracks and crevices,” she says. “Much like our bodies, our refrigerators take a hit after a long winter filled with leftover soups and stews.”

Ready your glass containers for fresh produce, like arugula, ramps, and strawberries. “I always recommend eating seasonally and loading up on the foods that are at their peak freshness,” Kunin says. “Some of my favorite springtime produce includes okra, radishes, spinach, onions, sprouted seeds, and microgreens. I also stock up on jars of all my favorite fermented foods.”

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Health-ade ginger-lemon kombucha
Photo: Health-Ade Kombucha™

Lily Kunin’s Digestion-Friendly Spring Mocktail

Yields 1 serving

Ingredients
8 ounces Health-Ade Ginger-Lemon Kombucha
1 dropperful Urban Moonshine Organic Digestive Bitters
Sprig of fresh mint
Slice of lemon
Raw honey to taste, optional

1. Rub rim of your glass with lemon wedge, pour pink salt onto a plate, and dip rim of glass into salt to coat.

2. Add ice, followed by all ingredients, and gently stir. Garnish with mint and sliced lemon, and enjoy!

In partnership with Health-Ade Kombucha™

Top photo: Lily Kunin

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