While it is important to stay hydrated all year long, this becomes even more imperative, and challenging, during the heat of summer. But if, like me, your response to the prospect of drinking more water is to feel less than inspired, it can be quite tough to get all the liquid you need. You may prefer the fizziness of soda, the sweet taste of juice, or even the caffeine jolt you get from coffee. And, while it’s, of course, fine to have some of those drinks, the reality is that they aren’t as hydrating, healthy, or beneficial to your body as Mother Nature’s creation.
If you fall into the category of people who find regular water to be, well, a little dull, there’s hope for you through the simple joy of flavored water.
A Hydration Trick You’ve Probably Never Heard
I recently co-taught an online course on rejecting the dieting mindset and learning to eat for physical and emotional nourishment with food with the amazing Kim La Vere of Land and Local. In one of our office hours, a participant shared their frustration with working hard to drink more water only to have to pee all the time. We explained that when you are dehydrated your body has trouble holding onto water, which means it just goes right through you, kind of like when rain falls on parched earth and the water just runs off, rather than soaking in. Kim then shared this insanely simple trick that has been an absolute game-changer for me (and was for everyone else in the course as well).
Her tip: sprinkle a little salt in your water.
According to Kim, by adding just a small amount of salt (trust me, you can’t even taste it), your body is better able to absorb the water, which will help you to stay better hydrated and pee less. When I started doing this 1-second trick, not only did I have fewer trips to the bathroom, but I also noticed that some of the micro-wrinkles around my eyes disappeared. Amazing!
So, no matter which flavored water combination from below you try, consider adding a little bit of salt to further improve your hydration.
Keep Your Cool with Refreshing and Delicious Flavored Water Recipes
When I refer to flavored waters, I’m not talking about the bottled stuff that you’ll find on grocery store shelves (that often has artificial sweeteners and chemicals, and increases our use of plastic bottles), but rather water that you flavor yourself. It’s easier than it sounds and you can get creative and quench your thirst at the same time.
Not only are flavored waters refreshing, tasty and hydrating, but they’re also pretty! They’re great for entertaining and are much more exciting and earth-friendly than bottled water. Just picture a large pitcher filled with colorful fresh fruits, veggies and herbs. It’s like art in a pitcher!
While the options and combinations for flavoring your water are pretty endless, most flavored waters have fresh fruits, herbs, vegetables, or a combination of all three. To help you get started and find some inspiration, I have pulled together some that are especially delicious and refreshing.
This version was created by my good friend Linda Wolpert, who worked for many years as The Scramble’s photographer and customer service guru.
If you want to feel like you’re at the spa (even if you’re sitting at your desk working on a deadline), this one is for you. The cucumber and lemon combination is cooling and bright and the parsley adds a wonderful herbal punch.
This one was thought up by Whole Foods and is the perfect pairing of sweet and spicy!
This cooling and sweet combination just screams “SUMMER!!” This is also a great way to use up a watermelon than isn’t as flavorful as you might like and/or strawberries that are just past their peak.
Some more fun ideas
And if you are looking for even more inspiration, BuzzFeed’s Melissa Harrison has some delicious looking suggestions for a variety of fruit-infused waters.
If you’d like to up your game a little more, Joy Bauer’s Peach-Raspberry Iced Tea requires you to brew a little tea, but is so pretty that it’s worth the extra 5 minutes!
While we’ve suggested the combinations above, don’t feel like you need to follow a recipe. You can use a little trial and error with your favorite fresh produce and tweak as you go.
We’d love to hear your suggestions for flavored water. Please share them in the comments!
For more easy, creative and delicious recipes for not only summer but all of the seasons, check out The Scramble’s weekly meal planning service. The Scramble takes the stress out of 6:00 by giving you an easy, online meal planning and grocery shopping system, along with fail-proof, family-friendly recipes.