It’s 3 pm, you’ve been busy all day with work, play or running a thousand errands. No time to stop…go, go, go! Then you start to notice a little dry mouth. Ok, whatever. Keep going. Then a headache starts setting in. You figure it’s because you haven’t stopped all day. But, did you stop to think when the last time you drank anything? Oops, the last time you had anything was a cup of caffeinated coffee at 8 am. WHOA! No wonder your pee is amber orange! Your body is trying to tell you something. Are you listening?
When the body needs water our brains send the signal of thirst – an essential survival mechanism that maintains fluid balance. But sometimes the thirst signal is too late. You’re already down dehydration road. Water is the most essential nutrient our bodies need. Every process in the body requires water – not enough and you could face more than dehydration. Headaches, muscle cramps, kidney stones, loss of cognitive function, constipation, and fatigue can all be related to poor fluid balance. Adequate hydration also plays an important role in metabolism and weight management.
Having a pre-filled water flask always on hand is one of the best habits we can practice to ensure proper hydration, but even with the super sleek containers available today, most people still do not achieve adequate water intake. Plain water is refreshing to many. But, sometimes we’re looking for something a little less…meh. The requisite lemon wedge is always nice, but we’re often left wanting more. Let’s explore some ways to jazz it up a bit and transform your water to refreshing and hydrating. Here is a simple formula with some recipes to try.
Refresh and Hydrate with Natural Sweetness
MUDDLED FRUIT: Soft fruits work best. A drink muddler is meant for this task [the kind they use to muddle fruit in glasses for mojitos] but you can also place fruit in a bowl and break it up with a fork or use a mortar and pestle to gently break apart fruit.
- Ripe nectarines or peaches coarsely chopped
- Pitted cherries
HERBS: Here are a few combinations – chop coarsely and muddle with fruit before adding liquids.
- Mint + Watermelon
- Basil + Peach
- Rosemary + Grapefruit
- Sage + Blackberry
- Lemon verbena + ANYTHING!
- Cilantro + Lime + Honeydew
LIQUID BASE: Go for color and flavor.
- Herbal Tea – We love hibiscus for its gorgeous color and rich flavor. Steep four bags in a cup of boiling water to increase the density of flavor. Search Hibiscus tea on Amazon
- Green Tea – Everything from matcha to yerbé mate, it’s all good. Be sure to select caffeinated varieties as the health-promoting flavonoids are destroyed during the decaffeination process.
- Lemon Tea – Add the rind from a lemon to 2 cups of boiling water. Simmer for 5 minutes then let sit to infuse.
- Ginger Tea – Peel and coarsely chop 2” piece of ginger and bring to a boil in two cups of water. Simmer for 5 minutes then let sit to infuse.
CITRUS: Squeeze in to finish and add some slices for visual impact.
More Add-ins for Refreshing and Hydrating Flavors:
- Splash of sparkling water – Everyone loves a little fizz!
- Cucumber – Nothing screams refreshing quite like cucumber! Just peel and process in a blender to purée. About 1/2 cucumber per drink works.
- Chia seed – Add chia seed to make a Chia Fresca! This seed holds more than 30x its weight in water and can help maintain hydration long after you have emptied your glass. Try adding 1 teaspoon to your glass and stir well. Let sit for 10 minutes before drinking.
- Stevia or a touch of agave for added sweetness
PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER: Try these delicious recipes
- Cilantro-Lime Melon Cooler: honey dew + cilantro + matcha green tea + lime juice + cucumber
- Ultimate Aqua Fresca: strawberry + mint + hibiscus tea + lime + sparkling water
- Fuzzy Peach-Basil Chia Fresca: peach + basil + peach green tea + lemon + chia seed
- Blackberry-Sage Cooler: blackberries + sage leaf [just one will do] + berry green tea + sparkling water
- Citrus Rosemary Refresher – nectarine + rosemary [just a few leaves with stem for garnish] + green tea + grapefruit + cucumber
Check out more refreshing recipes…HERE