Thirsty? During the hot summer months it is important to hydrate and enjoy tall, tasty drinks. Dehydration is not always apparent. Keep in mind, in the summer heat you need to drink more. Try this calculator to figure out just how much fluid your body needs, http://nutrition.about.com/library/blwatercalculator.htm.
1. Water will always top my list. Add a slice or two of lemon or lime, cucumber & mint, berries, or any fruit of your choice to replace electrolytes lost from sweating. Clear crisp refreshing always and no calories.
2. Make your own vegetable juice or green drink, this one looks OH SO GOOD!, http://www.betternutrition.com/green-smoothie-drink/columns/askthenaturopath/1166, or buy an already made powder, greens plus http://greensplus.com/index.php. Vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and fiber play an important role in wellness.
3. Watermelon smoothie, see this simple “pinktastic” beverage recipe http://low-cholesterol.food.com/recipe/watermelon-smoothie-33787, fewer calories than a 100 calorie snack pack with 25 calories and a good dose of vitamin A, potassium and nutrients that promote good bone health, fluoride, calcium, magnesium and even a little choline (see why choline is so important to good health here, https://valerieberkowitz.wordpress.com/2013/06/11/eggs-are-not-evil/ ).
4. Rooibos tea (pronounced roy-bos) is caffeine free so it is not dehydrating (maintains fluid and electrolytes) and it does not contain tannins (compounds that decrease iron and amino acid absorption).
5. Kefir is packed with nutrients, supports digestion and bone health. It naturally contains good bacteria and everyone should use a good probiotic. One 4 oz. serving contains 75 calories, 4 grams of fat, 6 grams of carbs and 4 grams of protein.
Honorable mentions, because they are processed but much better options than Gatorade or sugar laden drinks, go to:
1. Coconut water (in a can and unsweetened, of course) only 60 calories for 11 oz. and 100% is sugar (coconut is a fruit) and about 700 mg potassium but if you like it drink 1/2 (about 5-6 oz) along with a protein snack.
2. V-8, although this is a vegetable juice, it is processed so it has higher amounts of sodium; but it does contain vitamins A and C, and the minerals iron and calcium.
Most commercially made items contain at least one addictive substance like caffeine, salt or sugar. Eating these habit-forming substances are not just addictive but they also increase your body needs for more fluid. Please keep this in mind, you are not helping yourself if you typically gulp down sugary fruit or sports drinks and soda, even diet soda is filled with caffeine and sodium.
Use your good judgment and know that drinking is just as important as eating when it comes to good health and hydration. Know to avoid sugar, sodium and caffeine in the beverages you choose. Then find almost any recipe like the ones that are listed and drink. Drinking healthier beverages does not have to be boring. Liven up your
Take on a tall and tasty while staying hydrated and serving your body sensational fluids and wellness. Fill your glass and make a toast to healthy hydration. Drink up!