RECIPES: 5 Fruit, Vegetable & Herbal Infusions To Perk Up Your H2O

GOOD LIVING IS GLAM FOR ECO DIVA BEAUTY–As we approach the warm weather season, it's more important than ever to make sure you're getting enough hydration (and no, coffee and tea don't count! Trust me, I've tried to make that justification before).  Drinking two liters of water a day is one of the single most important habits of people with ageless, glowing skin, but more importantly it's essential to maintaining a healthy body, a clear mind and proper metabolic function.  If you're anything like me, however, sometimes you just want something a bit more exciting than a plain glass of water.  Here's a solution: add a little zest to this skin essential ritual with five fruit, vegetable and herbal infused waters that will get you excited to hydrate simply because they look beautiful, taste refreshing and provide an added vitamin and nutrient boost.

Remember that water plays an integral role in nearly every body function:  it aids in digestion and eliminates waste from the body; regulates temperature; transfers oxygen to cells and protects your tissue, spinal cord and joints.  Up to 60% of our bodies are water, so when we deny ourselves a sufficient amount, the lack of hydration can present itself in numerous health issues, including dry, flaky skin that’s prone to wrinkling. In severe cases, dehydration can adversely affect kidney function, circulation and blood pressure. 

People fall in and out of love with drinking water for many different reasons. For me, my water intake fluctuates because I don’t like to feel full.  In order to avoid feeling bloated, I drink small amounts of water frequently throughout the day.  To help curb my wandering eye for other beverages, I prepare these infused waters, which are perfect during the spring and summer months when produce is lush and ripe.

Here are some tips for your Fruit, Vegetable & Herbal Infused waters:

  • Gently muddle a small amount of your ingredients to initiate the release of flavor.
  • Explore different flavor combinations.  Remember, this is all a matter of personal taste and preference. 
  • Less is more.  Some herbs, such as basil, can be quite powerful so gradually add ingredients to taste. 
  • Add ice.  These infusions taste better when chilled.
  • Use the highest quality natural spring water from a trusted source.  I prefer Mountain Valley Spring Water.

 

THE HOT & HAPPY

Watermelon, Jalapeno & Thyme

Watermelons are 6% sugar, 91% water and loaded with immune boosting vitamin C and vitamin A.  Hot jalapenos contain calorie-burning capsaicin, which also triggers the release of endorphins, the “happy” hormone that creates an energizing surge through your body. This is the perfect marriage of subtly sweet and deceptively spicy for those who aren’t afraid of generating a little heat in their water.


3 cups chopped, seeded watermelon

4 cups water

1/2 jalapeno, stemmed, seeded, sliced

optional, 1 sprig fresh thyme
Ice for serving

 

THE HEALTHY HEART

Blackberries & Sage

This is one of my favorite fruit-herbal waters.  The earthy, peppery notes of sage infuse the water with a unique and delicate essence.  While sage contains vitamin A, calcium and iron, blackberries are loaded with fiber and polyunsaturated fats, which are good for heart health.


½ pint blackberries

4 cups water

2 sprigs sage

Ice for serving

 

THE IMMUNE BOOST

Raspberry, Ginger & Lemon

Ginger’s anti-inflammatory, immune boosting and gastrointestinal health benefits coupled with the anti-bacterial, alkalinizing, cleansing properties of vitamin C packed lemons, make the RG&L an absolute must-have in your water arsenal.

Ingredients:

1/2 pint raspberries, washed

1 knob of ginger

1 small lemon

4 cups of water

ice for serving

 

THE REFRESHER

Lime & Basil

Tart lime meets fragrant basil to create an exotic fruit-herbal essence that also contains vitamin C and Iron.

½ lime, thinly sliced

6 basil leaves

4 cups water

ice for serving

 

THE CLEANSER

Cucumber & Lemongrass

Refreshing cucumbers take an exotic twist when paired with fibrous, citrusy lemongrass.  Composed of 95% water, cucumbers help keep the body hydrated and promote the release of toxins.  They are also rich in vitamins A, B1, B6, C & D, calcium, magnesium, and potassium. 

1/2 cucumber, thinly sliced

1 stalk lemongrass, smashed

4 cups of water

ice for serving

Prepare your waters for the day and keep them cool for optimum flavor and freshn­­ess.  These recipes and combinations are a great way to spice up your relationship with water, however if you want to drink it clean and pure, that’s perfectly fine, too.