How to Spring Clean Your Diet and Pantry

Spring cleaning isn’t just for your cluttered attic or dark basement. It also applies to what we eat.

I love spring. There is no better season, in my mind. My birthday month is May, and growing up, it used to rain a lot before then; as my mom would say, April showers bring May flowers. So being holed up inside while it rained in April meant plenty of time to organize and clean each spring. Spring cleaning was a thing.

As I am an adult and have a home, that spring tradition never skips a year. And over the years, it’s evolved from not only my garage and closet but to my pantry, fridge, freezer, and BODY. Yes, you can spring-clean all of it. Because let’s do a quick audit. How many of you have checked all of your New Year’s health goals?. Should I ask a little louder for the people in the back? I know I have released the reins on mine, so this is the perfect time for a check-in.

What I mean is to clean up all the things you have in your home that contribute to what you put in your body: your pantry, freezer, fridge and medicine cabinet, which all directly affect your diet.

Here are some ideas below for getting this done efficiently and in a way that leaves you feeling lighter — literally and figuratively.

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You know those hard-to-reach shelves? Grab a ladder and get to it. I get lazy when I start to accumulate things in my pantry. I don’t entirely seal chip bags. I lazily put away cereal. Or don’t even know visibly what it is in there, and now I have four more cans than I need of black beans.

Go through each shelf and throw away anything stale, out of date or inedible. Then go through and donate any nonperishable item that you no longer need.

Group the items, splurge on organizational bins and shelves, and label them if you wish.

Having everything visible cuts down on food costs, waste and excess.


Like your pantry, the freezer can be a dark and scary place. It’s where we throw day-old bread to use on a rainy day. Or a piece of cake from Christmas we might want to nosh in the summer. Be honest and discard freezer-burned, spoiled or old gross food. You can buy another if you really want a piece of cake on a paper plate with plastic wrap on top. Consolidate items also. I see your four different chocolate ice creams.

Then try to use what you have in the coming weeks to make room for new things to make you and your body feel better. Use this time to notice patterns in your diet that might not be great ones.


I know everyone reading this has a condiment collection to win a trophy. But guess what? Condiments go bad, and when they are cross-contaminated, they spoil also.

I use this time to use the last teaspoon of hot sauce to make room for a new one. Or noticed that I have four different kinds of oil and vinegars, and it’s time to commit to one. If you don’t like something, get rid of it. And clean out the back of the fridge, too. Better yet, take everything out, wipe it down, and restock it.

Take these moments to see where you could edit some of your food choices and make better ones.


This one is too often overlooked but crucial. So often, I have a cold and panic buy all the remedies, only to have them all in my medicine cabinet already. OR I go to take said medications; if you don’t know this already, it is expired.

Cough syrup can expire. Painkillers have a shelf life.

Also, those rogue Band-Aids. Take them out of the box and consolidate them into one bin. You’ll be thankful. Nothing irks me like a Band-Aid box that won’t stay closed and releases random Band-Aids out into the wild.

This is also an excellent time to see what you need more or less of. Always out of vitamin C, stock up. Six bottles of Advil — consolidate.

When we can see what we have, there is a better chance of reducing waste.


Now that you’ve cleaned out all the nooks that fuel your body take this time to look at what could use some edits. Do you see a pattern of quarter-eaten tubs of ice cream covered in freezer burn? Dig into why there are that many and when you’re buying them. Or you’re a collector, and I can co-sign that; I collect electrolytes. But seriously. Note where you see some of your not-so-great eating habits and start finding healthier, natural food options for them.

In the same breath, if you constantly throw away half-filled bottles of almond milk because you just don’t like the taste, ditch the almond milk. Use dairy MILK! Just make it organic. Notice you have six of the same kind of chip, just a different brand? Find your favorite and stick to it. Buy a few extras to have on hand. Don’t settle for a bad chip. Get the chip you want to dip.

This all must sound relatively straightforward and nothing new. And I repeat my health prompts often, but the most successful thing you can do for your health is to be consistent. So I will consistently remind you to make edits to reap the rewards.

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