DIY Hydrating Health Elixirs

by Suzanne Foglio | January 28th, 2015 | Fitness Expert, Holistic

Holistic-Fitness-ExpertThe general rule of thumb is to drink half your body-weight in ounces of water each day.  Someone that weighs 160 pounds would want to consume approximately 80 ounces of water daily and even more during intense workouts and hot weather.

But what if you don’t like water and no matter how hard you try you just can’t choke it down?  Infused water is a healthier alternative to sugar-laden soft drinks and a great way to increase your water intake by making it more palatable.

Lemon and Cayenne Water– Quick start your digestion and immune system with this morning elixir.

Lemons are loaded with phytonutrients and Vitamin C traveling through the body and neutralizing free radicals and inflammation.  Vitamin C is important to a strong immune system. Even though lemons are tart and acidic, they are alkalizing to our system.

Cayenne Pepper helps circulation, aids in digestion and absorption of nutrients.  Some people report great success using cayenne as an appetite suppressant.

Directions: Add juice of a half a lemon and cayenne to taste to 10oz. warm water (not boiling).  If you drink this regularly, you may want to drink this with a straw to protect the enamel on your teeth from the lemon.

Cucumber Basil Water – This combination is served in fancy spa’s around the world.

Cucumbers are know to contain lignans that have a strong history with reduced risk of cardiovascular disease as well as several cancer types, including breast, uterine, ovarian and prostate cancers.

Basil has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.  It is a good source of magnesium, which promotes cardiovascular health by prompting muscles and blood vessels to relax, thus improving blood flow and lessening the risk of irregular heart rhythms.

To make: Start with a large glass pitcher.  Peel and slice a large cucumber, add a handful of sliced (or lightly bruised) basil, add a pinch of sea salt (optional) and fill with water. Refrigerate overnight.  You can also make individual servings in mason jars.  Just adjust the amount ingredients to taste.

Pineapple Parsley Water – While enjoying this super refreshing drink, you’ll be happy to know pineapple is a wonderful source of important vitamins and minerals such as vitamins C, A, B-6 and calcium, iron, thiamin, riboflavin, folate, pantothenic acid, magnesium, manganese, potassium and antioxidants and polyphenols.

It’s interesting to note, according to Medical News Today, fresh pineapple is the only known source of an enzyme called bromelain, which has been used in studies to determine it’s effectiveness in alleviating joint pain, arthritis, reduce inflammation, inhibit tumor growth and shorten recovery time following plastic surgery.

Parsley is an excellent source of vitamins K and C and a good source of vitamin A, folate and iron.  Parsley also qualifies as a chemo-protective food and one that can neutralize certain types of carcinogens due to its volatile oils.

Directions:  Add 1-2 cups of sliced or cubed pineapple and a handful of parsley.  Lightly mash ingredients together and add to water. This can be enjoyed right away or you can refrigerate overnight.

Watermelon, Lime, Mint Water – Even though watermelon is made up of 92% water it is a great source of lycopene that is important for cardiovascular and bone health.  It is also a very good source of vitamin C.

In addition to limes having all of the same wonderful health benefits of lemons they include flavonoids called flavonol glycosides that have been shown to stop cell division in many cancer cell lines.  These flavonoids have also been shown to have an antibiotic effect and used to combat cholera disease epidemics in West Africa.

Mint has one of the highest antioxidant capacities of any food.  Its health benefits include soothing symptoms associated with irritable bowl syndrome, upset stomach, indigestion and helps to relieve seasonal allergy symptoms, sooth a sore throat and helps to break up phlegm.

Directions: Start with a large glass pitcher.  Cut 1-2 cups of cubed watermelon, slice 1 lime, add a handful of sliced (or lightly bruised) mint, add a pinch of sea salt (optional) and fill with water. Refrigerate overnight.

It’s not a complicated process and it’s really a matter of taste.  You can add any combination of fruit, vegetables and herbs and spices.

Make individual servings in mason jars for a quick grab and go, just adjust the amount ingredients to taste.

Most importantly, avoid adding cancer-causing pesticides to your infused water by using organic produce that has been thoroughly washed.

Please share your favorite infused water recipes in the comments below.

Comments on DIY Hydrating Health Elixirs

All health and fitness information is provided for educational purposes. Please consult with your physician before beginning any exercise regimen.