Reset, refresh, re-energize

Images courtesy of Jaclyn Doyle.

We’re nearly there. Out of the dark, cold nights and into the longer, warmer evenings and earlier sunrises. Let’s face it, winter is not easy. It’s often cold, windy, rainy and dark. Naturally, this makes us more tired and less energetic and this is hard to fight sometimes.

These feelings of lethargy and low energy can also lead us to over-eat our favourite comfort foods and be less active than normal.

Coming into Spring is a great way to refresh and ‘spring clean’ our diets. When we are trying to reset our diets in any way, it is essential to take it in small steps. So often people try and overhaul their diets overnight, which can lead to binging, discouragement and sometimes added weight gain.

Don’t just spring clean your homes this year, read on for some small changes you can do to feel refreshed and energized coming into spring!

Eliminating Dairy
The dairy debate has been an on-going discussion for quite some time. With low-fat, non-fat, full-fat milks available and countless dairy-free options, it is hard to decipher what is good for us and what isn’t. Dairy is highly inflammatory and is actually one of the most inflammatory foods in the modern diet, apart from gluten.

High consumption of dairy can also cause digestion issues, weight-gain and bloating. When eliminating dairy, there are a ton of dairy-free options to choose from. Almond milk is becoming more mainstream in cafes and can be found at most grocery stores. Always make sure that it is an unsweetened version, though, otherwise you will be consuming added and unwanted sugar.

I find that cashew milk is my favourite dairy-free option because it is so simple to make. Also, when you make anything from scratch you know exactly what is in it. Check out the culinary corner for my cashew milk recipe.

Incorporating green smoothies daily
Green smoothies are a great way to get large amounts of greens in quickly. They are so nutrient-dense that we get an influx of vitamins and minerals into our bloodstream in a short amount of time. There are green smoothies out there that can also be unhealthy, though, if purchased store-bought with unwanted ingredients in them (watch out for apple juice or orange juice from concentrate).

Low-sugar green smoothies are easily digestible, can reduce cravings and are extremely beneficial for weight loss. Having a green smoothie in the morning in addition to some protein will fuel your body for the morning and help you feel energized and refreshed for the day. Check out the culinary corner for a low sugar, nutrient dense green smoothie recipe.

Eliminating processed foods
Eating a diet consisting of real foods means getting rid of the over-processed foods and instead, eating a diet that is rich in nutrients including fruits, vegetables, good quality meats and fish, some whole grains and good carbohydrates. It doesn’t have to be over-complicated but eating real food does take some preparation.

For example, instead of reaching for the frozen pizzas or microwaveable meals, make a healthier version. Grab a thin crust (option for gluten) pizza crust, top with fresh or homemade tomato sauce and load up with veggies. This version will not only be healthier but by managing the ingredients, it won’t leave you feeling bloated or lethargic afterwards.

Jaclyn Doyle is a certified nutritional therapist and helps clients change their diets and lifestyle with personalized nutrition plans. She realizes that everyone is different and individuals need a specific and personalized nutrition plan to achieve their goals. Please contact Jaclyn Doyle on or visit her blog at

The Culinary Corner

Pictured: Cashew Milk.

Cashew Milk
1 cup cashews soaked
4 cups filtered water
Teaspoon cinnamon (optional)
Soak the cashews for 3-4 hours or over night
Rinse and drain cashews.
Blend on high with 4 cups filtered water
and cinnamon.
Store in a glass jar or mason jar for up to 3-4 days.

Pictured: Green Smoothie.

Low sugar green smoothie
1 cup unsweetened almond milk or coconut milk
or cashew milk
1 cup spinach
Half a cup of frozen pineapple
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1 tablespoon spirulina
Blend on high and enjoy!

By Jaclyn Doyle