Long days, bright sun, a million activities, hard workouts… let’s all stay hydrated!
With store-bought sodas, juice, sports drinks all containing too much sugar and chemical additives, and water sometimes not enough or just a little too dull, here’s a round-up of clean beverages I’ve put together to keep us happy and hydrated.
“Vitamin Water” – My family (and friends) have been experimenting with making flavored water over the past few weeks by adding fruits and herbs to jugs of water and refrigerating over night. We learned the technique through a Facebook photo shared by a weight-loss program, and find the water refreshing. I’ve long been a fan of lemon, cucumber and mint in my water (makes me feel like I’m at a spa), but we’ve taken it to the next level with some more interesting combinations. Pineapple and mint, cantaloupe and cilantro, lemon and parsley have all been successes by adults and kids alike.
Here’s how to do it: Chop up about a cup of fruit and a handful of fresh herbs. Place them in a gallon of water and refrigerate overnight. Strain out fruit and herbs (use them for a smoothie) and enjoy the fun and refreshing chilled water.
“Sports Drink” – Gatorade is not healthy! The ingredient list makes me cringe, but I know there is a need for a sports drink when working hard or long or in the heat. Here’s what I’m throwing together this summer for swim meets, yard work and hot yoga workouts – you know, when the sweat is about to flow!
Lemon-Orange “Aid”: Mix 2 cups coconut water, juice from a lemon and half an orange, 1T maple syrup (or honey), a pinch of salt. You can make it stronger or sweeter to your preference and dilute it with water and ice to what works best for you. I like to slice the other half of the orange into rounds and float them in the jar. The drink gets better after spending a night in the refrigerator.
“Recovery Drink” – My favorite new smoothie makes me so happy after a workout. I can feel the yummy goodness building up my depleted muscles, supporting my gut, and refueling the system. And it’s delicious and filling. Boo-ya!!
Blend 1 ripe banana, 1 cup frozen fruit of your choice (I like an organic berry blend or an organic peach, mango, strawberry blend – both from Costco), 1/2 cup organic NOT sweetened Kefir, 1 1/2 cup organic coconut water. Makes two servings or about three cups.
“Party Drinks” – It’s BBQ/Outdoor Party season and that often means hours of mindless consuming. When the party is at your house be sure to offer some drink options that hydrate your masses. The bar could offer Orange Pom Spritzers. The beverage station could include fresh unsweetened iced tea (make a strong pot of your favorite tea and dilute with water and ice) served with lemon slices and honey. And be sure to include a large beverage jug filled with water (made fancy with lemon slices or mint leaves).
Keep calm and HYDRATE on…