Cut Sugar with Infused Water

Your body is a machine and needs to be maintained consistently with what fuels it: water. The adult female body itself contains ~55% of water whereas the adult male body contains ~65% water (http://water.usgs.gov). As simple as H20 may be, water helps maintain the homeostasis of the body as well as lubricates joints, protects the spinal cord and other sensitive tissues, helps maintain weight and remove waste from the body.

Begin this New Year off right by substituting that can of soda for a bottle of water since that will save you about 240 calories from your diet (http://www.cdc.gov.) To ease into the habit of drinking more water, start out drinking fruit, vegetable, or herb infused water. Adding these fresh ingredients to your water will add a splash of sweetness to your day along with essential vitamins, bioflavonoids and phytochemicals to your boost immunity and strength.

Many fruits contain natural sugars, such as fructose, which is similar to glucose but is not metabolized the same way and thus does not affect blood glucose levels like the traditional sodas and sports drink do. Other additions to fruit infused water, such as cucumbers, basil and mint leaves have a variety of health benefits as well and taste great. Below are a list of the most common infused water contents and a few combination recipes to start the New Year off healthy and hydrated!

Cucumbers: Mainly composed of water, this vegetable is a great addition to any infused fruit combination. The green skin contains beta carotene, so make sure to not peel it off. They contain no cholesterol, fat or sodium and are a good source of Vitamin K, essential for bone density and strength.

Mint Leaves: A popular flavoring agent, mint leaves are a perfect addition to any infused water beverage and known to help aid in digestion, reduces stomach pain, gas and bloating especially in individuals who have Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS).

Lemons: The most common citrus you see in your water at restaurants, this powerful fruit is fat free, saturated fat free, cholesterol free and high in vitamin C. They are a great source for detox beverages due to their antiseptic properties and an excellent source of iron, calcium and fibers.

Limes: Similar to lemons, this citrus is also low fat and high in vitamin C. They contain a large amount of flavonoids which may help reduce risk of some forms of cancer and heart disease along with folic acid, a vitamin of the B complex that helps form red blood cells.

 Oranges: Available in a variety of sizes, oranges are famous for their source of vitamin C but they also are great source of potassium, an element important for muscle function and maintaining the body’s electrolyte and pH balance.

Apples: An apple a day keeps the doctor away is a true statement indeed! They help reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, lung cancer, and contain a very significant source of flavonoids which has the strongest association with decreased mortality.

Strawberries: The contents in this sweet fruit have potent antioxidant power which helps reduce the risk of cardiovascular events and they also processes agents that improve the aging of the brain.

Blueberries: They may turn the water blue, but these powerful little berries have important health benefits. They inhibit cancer cell proliferation and may delay the development of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease.

Raspberries and Blackberries: These berries are high in dietary fiber and a half-cup of berries provides an adult with 100% of their daily recommendation of vitamin C.

Other contents you can add can be grapefruits, pineapple, kiwis, watermelon, basil and rosemary leaves.

Combination Ideas

*Be sure to use a glass pitcher to avoid absorption and allow the contents to infuse for a little over an hour or longer.

Hydration + Weight

Limes + Lemons +Cucumber

Migraine Relief

Green Tea + Limes + Mint:

Vitamin C + Colon Cleanse

½ cup of Raspberries + Lemon + Mint or ½ cup of Blackberries + Lemons +Mint

Prepare your infused water before the next day using Mason Jars.

Prepare your infused water before the next day using Mason Jars.