Spring Clean Your Diet: Tips to Declutter Unhealthy Eating Habits and Introduce Fresh, Nutritious Springtime Foods

The glow of the sun, longer days, and flowers in full bloom announce that spring has arrived. One of our favorite seasons is here, and for many, it’s a time for thorough cleaning of our homes. But why not “clean” our diet as well? Here are some tips to leave behind those not-so-healthy eating habits and introduce fresh and nutritious foods characteristic of spring.

Check your pantry!

Start by getting rid of those processed foods high in sugars, fats, and salt that you’ve accumulated over the winter. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), a diet high in these ingredients can lead to chronic diseases.

Embrace Seasonal Vegetables

Spring brings us a variety of fresh vegetables. Broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, asparagus, peas, and spinach are just a few examples of veggies that are at their peak of flavor and nutrition. A diet rich in vegetables can reduce the risk of many diseases and improve your overall health.

Limit Sugary Drinks

Replace sodas and juices high in sugar with water infused with fresh fruit slices like lemon or cucumber for flavor. The American Heart Association suggests limiting the amount of added sugars to promote heart health and prevent other chronic diseases.

Cook at Home

Preparing your own meals allows you total control over the ingredients. Use fresh herbs and spices instead of salt for seasoning and enjoy natural flavors. Cooking has many benefits, among them, you can save money.

Stay Hydrated

Water is vital to our health. As the weather warms up, make sure to drink enough water throughout the day to stay hydrated. You can use seasonal fruits to add a splash of flavor and nutritional value to your glass of water.

Enjoy Fresh Fruits

Blueberries, cantaloupe, grapefruit, guava, oranges, papaya, peaches, strawberries, tangerines, and watermelonare some of the fruits making their debut in spring and are delicious,  packed with vitamins, and an excellent option for a healthy snack. To know what is in season any time of the year follow Fresh from Florida.

Remember, just as our home needs a deep cleaning every now and then, our body appreciates a cleaner and fresher diet. By adopting these habits, you’ll not only feel lighter but also healthier.

Written by Irisvette Lagoa and Elizabeth C. Shephard


American Heart Association. (2023). How too much added sugar affects your health infographic. www.heart.org. https://rb.gy/oe9d6

“What’s in Season : Fresh from Florida.” Navigation, www.followfreshfromflorida.com/whats-in-season. Accessed 1 Apr. 2024.

USDA. (2023). Vegetables. MyPlate | U.S. Department of Agriculture. https://www.myplate.gov/eat-healthy/vegetables

World Health Organization. (2002, March 4). Diet, nutrition and the prevention of chronic diseases: Report of a joint WHO/FAO expert consultation. www.who.int. https://www.who.int/publications/i/item/924120916X



Elizabeth Shephard, Family and Consumer Science Agent with UF/IFAS Brevard County
Posted: April 16, 2024

Category: Food Safety, Health & Nutrition, UF/IFAS Extension, Work & Life
Tags: Cook, Cook At Home, Food, Fruit, Fruits, Health, Nutrition, Spring, Spring Cleaning, Vegetables

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