We have all been told how important it is to drink water – haven’t we? We need at least 2 litres per day to stay fully hydrated and let our bodies function properly. We need even more if we exercise or if it’s a hot humid day.
But there is just one problem, water can be quite … boring.
Why don’t we see if there are ways to jazz up the water you drink?
Here are my top seven.
Pick nearly any fruit and infuse it (or steep) it in water for up to 4 hours. The water should initially be hot (but obviously it won’t be after 4 hours! Duh!) Try these:
Slice up either lemons, limes, oranges or grapefruit and leave in water.
Mush up a few berries such as blueberries or raspberries and leave in water.
Throw a handful of different fruits into water (orange, lemon, lime and strawberry work well together) and leave for a few hours.
Throw in a tea bag to liven it up. However, when you become a tea addict like me (and you can) then don’t just throw any old tea bag in. O no – throw away Lipton’s Breakfast Tea and try the following:
Camomile tea can be effective at relieving tummy upsets and at reducing anxiety. Hence its reputation as a great tea to have before bed. It may also have anti-inflammatory powers. Yippee, that does it for me. I have OA in both knees and yet exercise vigorously daily – get that camomile tea down me now!
All teas have properties including boosting the levels of the calming brain chemical dopamine and improving attention, focus and overall mood. BUT before you rush for the tea pot consider that most teas also contain caffeine which can increase anxiety whilst having a dehydrating effect. So go for white tea which has the least caffeine and the mildest flavour.
Before you jump to conclusions and purchase a box of ‘Iced Tea Bags’ then beware. Several of these manufactured varieties are very high in sugars.
I prefer dawdling around the local T2 shop and purchasing some vastly over-priced variety after sampling it at their beautifully laid out sampling counter. My 9 year old daughter has helped me try several varieties. We make them up in hot water and then put a large jug in the fridge. Once served over ice cubes, iced teas really can be delightful on a hot summer’s afternoon.
Simply peel and slice up some raw ginger into hot water and leave to cool. Or try it hot on a winter’s day. As you sip think about all the wonderful immunity boosting properties of the ginger. Yeah baby!
You have to break apart the mint leaves first to release the flavour before adding to water. Try ice cold – very refreshing. You could also add some hulled strawberries and serve for afternoon tea but this sounds dangerously like Pimms to me – be warned!
Now you are definitely wondering which old wives tale I am repeating here aren’t you? Seriously folks, this one is awesome during flu and cold season. It combines ginger’s immunity boosting function with the anti-bacterial properties of both lemon and honey (Manuka is best) to relieve nasty cold symptoms.
I think you could mix nearly any spice and it would be nice (curry water???) but try this one first.
Steep 1 cinnamon stick, 2 star anise and 3 cardamom pods in hot water for 3 minutes and drink whilst warm. Cinnamon boosts satiety (it curbs your cravings), star anise is another immunity booster and cardamom is rich in vitamins and minerals. What a winner!
No, not the champagne silly – this is a health article! But, when all else fails just add sparkle. Purchase bottles of sparkling water at the supermarket or invest in your own home soda stream. It’s amazing how much bubbly water I can consume when the still variety just isn’t doing it for me.