Are you one of the many people that want something besides water to drink? There are so many products on the market these days and I am constantly asked what healthy drinks can you buy. Here is my answer…not to many. Once in a blue moon, one of the huge varieties of drinks won't hurt you, but many have side effects. Face it folks, if it is in a bottle, can, or preserved in some commercial way, it most likely has junk in there that isn't good for you. Remember, marketing on labels is designed to sell more product, not always to tell you the truth.
In this 4-part series I'll give you a run down on the good, the bad and the ugly on healthy drinks; some amazing recipes you can make at home that are full of nutrition and much cheaper than commercial options; and my general daily routine.
Everyone should start their day with a tall glass of water. Water re-hydrates your body and wakes up the brain. It helps improve digestion. Drinking chilled water in the morning can even boost your metabolism, which can help you lose weight. It also helps your body fight infections and supports the immune system. Overall, it refreshes the whole body in preparation for a new day. I drink Nikken alkaline filtered water. It is pure, refreshing and loaded with trace minerals. Drink the best water you can. Most bottled water I check is acidic and cannot be utilized very well by the body. Save your money on bottled water and invest in a filtration system.
We'll start with the good.
Fresh squeezed lemon in water helps to alkalize the body. Lemons are packed with nutrients including potassium and Vitamin C. It is an excellent way to start the day. For best results, drink on an empty stomach. If possible, wait 15 minutes before eating. Regardless of the timing, lemon in your water is beneficial anytime. I like to add a little stevia to sweeten. If you add warm water (which is recommended - but who wants warm lemon water - I drink it with room temperature water) you can add honey. Avoid using sugar to sweeten. Instead look for healthy sweeteners, if you need one. If you have sensitive teeth, use a straw. Not only is lemon water packed with nutrients, it boosts your immune system, flushes toxins, aids digestion, and reduces inflammation. Cost is low compared to commercial drinks flavored with unnatural lemon flavoring and inorganic vitamins added. Make it a lemon/lime drink by mixing 50/50.
Salt Sole with Himalayan salt is another excellent way to get your electrolytes and trace minerals. Himalayan salt is the best salt to use with 84 minerals in it to nourish your body. It is far superior to table salt. You can chug-a-lug a salty teaspoon or mix in water, lemon water, or even vinegar. One teaspoon each morning is recommended. If you are doing some heavy workouts you may want another teaspoon with the work out. It supplies your body with ionized minerals that stay in the body for 24 hours and helps to balance the body pH. It may actually lower blood pressure – what, salt???? Yes, that is what the studies show. It is the real deal while table salt is not - that is a substance that has been modified and no longer helps the body. Some of the benefits include reduced cravings, cleansing, anti-histamine, helps prevent varicose veins, eases muscle cramps, and the list goes on. It is easy to make. Purchase about 3 chunks of Himalayan salt (about 8 to 9 ounces) - this might set you back a couple of dollars. Put those salt chunks in a glass jar with a lid, like a pint canning jar. Fill the jar with filtered water and let sit for 24 hours. As long as you see salt chunks in the water, you have the perfect salinity. If you don't, get another salt chunk. Keep on the counter and take 1 teaspoon each morning. The cost is less than a penny a serving. You just can't beat that price and no unwanted stuff.
Raw apple cider vinegar or ACV has been around for decades and with good reason. You need the raw, unpasteurized stuff with the 'mother', the stringy floaties in the good stuff. It is full of enzymes and healing bacteria for the gut. It helps to lower blood sugar levels and may help with weight loss. It may also help relieve gas, bloating and heartburn. It promotes alkalinity in the body. Take 1 tablespoon 1 or 2 times daily as needed. Put it in a glass of water, juice, herbal tea or on top of a salad. I like mine in water with a couple of drops of stevia. Cost is pretty affordable compared to commercial drinks. Bragg's is a pretty good brand, but there are some others that are even better and barrel cured. Dr. Christopher's brand is an excellent source.
Kombucha can be purchased or made at home. You can expect to pay around $3 per bottle. There are many benefits of this 'elixir of life' which has been around for over 2,000 years. It may aid digestion, in fact many people have been able to get off their prescription antacids. It is a naturally fermented probiotic beverage. It helps to detoxify the body. When the body is able to get rid of toxins, it can heal the body of many diseases. Many people claim to have halted cancer with kombucha. It supports the joints and helps relieve arthritis. It is high in anti-oxidants which everybody needs. More anti-oxidants improve your immune system. Many people note that their cravings diminish or go away and report an increase of energy.
Herbal Tea you can easily make yourself or buy at a coffee shop. The stuff you buy in the store in a bottle most of the time has artificial sweeteners or sugar. Many people turn their noses up at herbal tea. I know I did for years. But, it is a wonderful beverage that has lots of health benefits. You can drink your tea, which is really an infusion, warm or cold. And if you need some help, ask us we carry a delicious line of herbal teas, Rooibus, and Mate.
With a little planning ahead you can take along any of the healthy drinks listed above, save money, and really be getting a nutritious, healthy beverage.
Check out part 2 for some of the not so good options out there.
What are your healthy drinks? Are you a water drinker? Post your answers below.
In the meantime, remember always reach for that glass of water; it does a body good.
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pictures Strawberry Splash by gt_pann and Fresh Homemade Lemonade With Mint And Raspberries by Apolonia at FreeDigitalPhotos