Monday, June 27, 2022

Staying Hydrated With Fruit Flavored Water.

We always hear that we need to stay hydrated.  In the summer, it can take more to stay hydrated than at other times of the year but it is possible to become dehydrated in the winter.  Years ago, I used to work at a Ren Faire in Texas.  We were told to drink lots of fluids even if you don't feel thirsty because by the time you feel thirsty, you are already dehydrated.  The one thing we'd do to monitor our intake was to check the color of our pee when we went to the bathroom.  If it was a dark yellow, you knew you needed to drink more water. 

The best liquid to prevent dehydration is plain old water but I am one of those people who never learned to like water.  It maybe because I've lived places where the water foamed, tasted weird, or just didn't look right. Yes, I could buy water from the store but I haven't always had the money to do that so I learned to take regular water and flavor it. I began with using bottle lemon or lime juice because I had that in my fridge. I'd add just a little juice to flavor it but not to the point of having to add sugar.

Later on, I learned about fruit infused water, where you place fruit into water to give it a bit of flavor but not enough to change the lack of flavor into a light hint of flavor. Many people need some sort of flavor associated with water.  Today, we'll look at how to make your own flavored waters and suggestions for flavors.

Once you've added the fruit, the flavors will begin to develop and you'll notice a light hint within 15 minutes for a light flavor but you get a stronger flavor after 30 to 60 minutes.  Depending on how strong you like your flavored water, you'll be able to use your fruits again up to four times. You can make a batch in the morning, then as you drink the liquid, refill it, and repeat throughout the day. Every time you reuse the fruit, the flavor becomes weaker and when the fruit has no more flavor, compost them.

The flavored water is best consumed on the day that it is made. If you use citrus with the rind to flavor the water, don't let it set longer than four hours or the liquid could become bitter.  It is important to keep the flavors nice so you'll drink the water and stay hydrated all day. In addition, you can use either plain or sparkling water so you can alternate the type of water if you want.

Rather than throwing fruit into a huge gallon or two of water, consider using a quart jar to make the fruit infused water in so the flavor spreads through it faster and is ready to drink quickly.  If you want, make one and when you begin to drink that, start a second jar so you have it ready as soon as you need it. Now for the suggestions of combinations.  Sparkling water can be used rather than plane water or you can alternate waters.

1.  Take, ice, 1/4 red or pink grapefruit cut into slices, a sprig of rosemary, and enough water to fill the jar to the top.   If you don't like ice, leave that out but put the grapefruit, rosemary, and ice into the container before filling with water.  Let set for between 15 minutes and an hour.  Refill when done.  When there is no flavor left, throw out the fruit and rosemary.

2. Take ice, 1/2 a lemon sliced into thin rounds, 1/2 a lime sliced into thin rounds, place into a container before covering with either plane or sparkling water. Let set between 15 and 60 minutes.  Make refills as needed.

3. Take ice, 1 peeled kiwi cut into thin slices, 2 strawberries hauled and sliced into thin rounds, 1/2 lime cut into slices placed in a container, and cover with water. 

4. Take ice, 1/4 of a cucumber cut into thin slices, 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves and place in a container.  Finish by filling with water and letting set 15 to 60 minutes before drinking.

5. Take ice, 3 to 4 half slices of watermelon that are further cut into smaller triangular slices, 1/4 cup of basil and place into the container.  Top with water and set 15 to 60 minutes before drinking.  Make refills as needed.

6. Take ice, 1/4 cup fresh raspberries, 1/4 cup mint leaves, and fill with plain or sparkling water,  and let set for 15 to 60 minutes. Make refills as needed. 

7. Take ice, 1/3 cup sliced pineapple, 1/4 cup fresh coconut separated from the shell, before covering with water and let set 15 to 60 minutes before drinking. 

8. Take ice, 1/4 cup blueberries, 1/2 orange sliced into thin slices, and fill with water before letting it set between 15 and 60 minutes.

9. Take ice, 1/2 cup strawberries thinly sliced, 5 basil leaves that have been torn to release flavor, and 1/2 thinly sliced lemon.  Fill with water and let set 15 to 60 minutes before drinking.

10. take ice, 1/2 cup of cubed honeydew melon, 1/2 cucumber thinly sliced, and 5 mint leaves torn in the container.  Fill with water and set between 15 and 60 minutes.

11. Take ice, 1 cup blackberries, 1/2 orange thinly sliced, and a 1 inch chunk of ginger that is thinly sliced.  Fill with water and set between 15 to 60 minutes.

12. Take ice, 1/2 mango cut into small cubes, 1/2 cup raspberries, and a one inch piece of ginger cut into thin slices.  Fill with water and let rest for 15 to 60 minutes.

These are just a few recipes to get you started.  You can mix whatever fruits you want to use or you can do a quick search for more suggested mixtures.  Let me know what you think, I'd love to hear.  Have a great day.

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