When the body needs water our brains send the signal of thirst – an essential survival mechanism that maintains fluid balance. 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. This is important to note, as every process in the body requires water – not enough and you could face more than dehydration. Kidney stones, lose of cognitive function, constipation, and fatigue can all be related to poor fluid balance.
We love you water, 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 from hydration to libation. Here is a simple formula with some recipes to try:
MUDDLED FRUIT + HERBS + LIQUID BASE + CITRUS + OPTIONAL ADD-INS
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 up with 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 of our favorite combinations – just 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. Our favorite brand is Republic of Tea.
- 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.
- Splash of sparkling water – Everyone loves a little fizz!
- Cucumber – Nothing screams refreshing quite like cucumber! Just peel and process in 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 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