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6 Health Boosting Infused Water Recipes
With summer in FULL swing it’s time to start thinking about how to stay hydrated in these sweltering temps! For me, it’s even more important to stay hydrated because as you know, I’m expecting a baby girl in September! I’ve always had to make a conscious effort to drink water. It’s not that I don’t know the benefits of staying hydrated… It’s literally the single most important thing you can do for your body! It’s just that… I don’t love the taste of plain water very much! So I decided to take some steps to make getting my 8 cups a day a little more enjoyable!
First, I bought a few cute water bottles to carry around with me every day. This is kind of like the idea that buying new cute workout clothes will make you want to work out… so buying fun new water bottles would make me want to carry them around, right?? I realize that plain old water is kind of boring so I wanted to figure out a way to make them taste better AND get some health boosting benefits out of them so if you have trouble getting your 8 glasses of water in each day because it’s boring and tasteless… read on!
How to Make Infused Water
You can infuse water with any number of herbs, spices, edible flowers, fruit and even vegetables! Here are some ideas:
- Herbs: Rosemary, thyme, mint, basil, cilantro, parsley
- Spices: Cinnamon sticks, fresh ginger, cloves, cardamom pods, vanilla bean
- Edible flowers: Lavender, citrus blossoms, hibiscus, rose, pansies, violets (you can get these at most health food stores but I usually just get mine on Amazon!)
- Fruit: (fresh or frozen) Berries, melon, tropical fruits, citrus, apples, pears
- Vegetables: Cucumber, fennel, carrots
- Water: Filtered tap water is fine here, don’t worry about getting expensive bottled water unless you just want to!
One thing I love to do when I’m planning on being home by myself (like on days I work from home) is get a 1 gallon jug for the fridge (I use this one) and fill it up each night so that I can sip on yummy infused water the next day without having to worry about making it on the spot! (it’s much better after it sits all night!) And if it’s a weekend and I know the boys are all going to be home I try to make up a double batch and leave it on the counter so they can easily access it themselves without needing any help! They love that they can be independent and fill up their bottles themselves! So whichever size batch you’re making, you’ll first want to gather whatever ingredients you like. Give the add-ins a good wash and try to use organic if you can. Or even better.. grow the ingredients yourself! I love growing fruits/veggies and herbs in my garden but I’ll save all of THAT for another post! Add the fruit, herbs, spices or whatever you want to use into the gallon jug of water.
*If I know I’m going to be out of the house the entire day I will sometimes fill up a few of my favorite water bottles with different ingredients the night before so I can just grab them and go!
Here are 6 of my favorite flavor combinations.
1. Blueberry Lemon Cucumber Mint
Beat the Bloat | Everyone experiences bloating on occasion. This refreshing infusion of fruits and vegetables with natural diuretic, or fluid-flushing, properties may be just what the doctor ordered. To manage mild bloating caused by overeating, salty foods or PMS, add 1/2 cup of blueberries, 2 sliced lemons, 10 fresh mint leaves, 1/2 of a cucumber, sliced, to three quarts of water. Let the mixture stand in a covered pitcher overnight, then serve it hot or chilled (over ice).
2. Lemon Basil
Antioxidant Punch | We all know that keeping our immune system in check is beneficial, but what if one yummy infused water could help fight off the common cold AND free radical damage? Slice up 3 lemons and mix it with a handful of basil into a gallon of water. Lemons are packed full of vitamins to help regulate digestion and boost your immune system. One of the key benefits of basil essential oil is the ability to help fight free radical damage while protecting DNA structure and cells. So if you are wanting a perfect mix of taste AND healthy, mix this up and let it chill overnight and give it a try!
3. Apple Cinnamon Stick Rosemary
Flat Tummy Detox | This is the original apple cinnamon infused water that helps with regulating sugar levels with an extra punch of rosemary which has great antibacterial benefits! For a great infused water recipe to fight bloat in the fall or winter, mix together 2 sliced apples, 3 cinnamon sticks, and 2 sprigs of rosemary into a gallon of water. This is great for lowering hunger cravings and helping burn fat. The cinnamon also helps your body regulate glucose levels.
4. Pineapple Strawberry Orange Mint
Immune Boosting | No matter what the season, keeping your immune system strong is important. For a flavorful way to boost your immunity from illness or heal faster from inflammatory infections, add 1 cup of cubed pineapple, 1 cup of chopped strawberries, 2 peeled oranges, and a handful of fresh mint to 1 gallon of water. The pineapple provides valuable amounts of bromelain, a chemical with anti-inflammatory effects and strawberries and oranges are chock-full of vitamin C!
5. Watermelon Mint
Muscle Recovery | Research has shown that drinking watermelon juice just before exercise reduces athletes’ heart rate and guards against muscle soreness the next day. (hey, it’s worth a shot!) For an ultra-hydrating pre-workout drink, swap out sugary sports drinks with water infused with fresh watermelon and mint. All you need to do is cut up 1/2 of a seedless watermelon and add a handful of fresh mint to your water jug, then fill it with water. Let it chill overnight for maximum flavor. (this is what is pictured above! My boys love the watermelon flavor and they also love helping me pick fresh mint from the garden!)
6. Raspberry Pineapple Sage
Relaxation | Known for its comforting relaxation effects, sage infusions are like a spa experience in a cup. For a sweet, fruity glass of calmness, add 1/2 cup crushed raspberries, 1/2 cup crushed pineapple and 4 fresh sage leaves to your gallon of water. The carbohydrates in the berries allow your brain to produce the calming, feel-good brain chemical serotonin. Allow to sit overnight in the fridge if possible. For an added perk, sip this water while taking a hot bath…. with the doors locked so your kids can’t get in! 🙂