It’s summer (stating the obvious – I know) and hydration is so important this time of year (again station the obvious).  You all know that water is essential to keep hydrated but let’s face it, drinking water can be boring sometimes, so here are a couple of creative ways to keep hydrated.

Note:  When creating these drinks make sure you get ripe fruit.  If you use unripe fruit, it won’t taste as good and may require you to use more fruit, and possibly, more sugar, to achieve the flavor you want.

Flavored water – this is relatively simple.  Here are some variations:

  • Cucumber and mint.
  • Mint and lime.  If you want to sweeten it add some agave syrup (very mojito-esq, but without the rum of course)
  • Lemon or lime slice.  Super simple.
  • Freeze strawberries, raspberries, or blackberries.  Whatever you like.  When frozen, place them in your water along with some lemon slices.
  • Aguas frescas.   Blend your favorite fruit with ice cold water.  Add some agave syrup or sugar substitute and enjoy.  You can spruce this up by adding citrus.   I’ve made several strawberry and watermelon aguas frescas with lime this summer.  It’s been pretty hot here in the Bay and it really keeps me cool and hydrated.

Iced herbal tea – Make sure its herbal because there’s no caffeine in herbal tea.  Remember, caffeine causes dehydration.

Iced flavored fruit herbal tea –  Steep your favorite tea and allow to cool.  While steeping your tea, make some simple syrup.  If you don’t want simple syrup due to the calories use agave.  Cut up your favorite fruit and steep it into the simple syrup.  If you’re using agave, puree the fruit and add agave.  Chop the remainder of the fruit to place into your cup.  Mix tea, simple syrup or agave and chopped fruit along with ice.  A fave of mine is peach tea or mango tea.

DIY pink lemonade – This cuts the calories and is good.  Take your blended agua fresca watermelon, the juice of a lemon, and agave syrup.

Popsicles – Take any of the above drinks along with the diced fruit(s) of your choice and place them into popsicle molds.  Place them into the freezer until ready.  On a hot day you’ll totally enjoy this refreshing treat.

Frozen fruit – So simple yet so underrated.  Frozen grapes and watermelons on a hot summer day are DELISH.  Go ahead and put a stick or toothpick into your fruit to make it feel like you’re enjoying a popsicle.  We’re all kids at hard.  

DIY smoothies – You may think smoothies, how is this going to keep me hydrated.  Fruits are packed with water and sugars so they’ll definitely keep you hydrated.  This will definitely keep you cool, hydrated and give you the necessary intake of vitamins.  Blend your favorite fruits with your favorite juice or milk and yogurt ( if you need your calcium like I do) along with ice and honey or agave.  Some magazines even suggest blending basil and spinach and other vegetables in your smoothies for extra water and vitamins….although I’m not that quite adventurous yet but you can try.  😛

The benefit of all this?  Hydrated, glowing, and healthy skin that will really show off that tan you may have just acquired.  Plus it’ll keep you away from those heat wave headaches.

To make these drinks not so beneficial in hydration department but for some grown up summer fun add your favorite liquor.  For teas, I suggest rum.  Dark rum, if you’re brewing with black tea leaves.  Light rum, if you’re brewing herbal and white tea leaves.  For lemonade, vodka.  For aguas frescas, tequila… like I did with some strawberries.  🙂

On another ocassion, I took the watermelon aguas frescas, lime juice, tequila (agave tequila), triple sec, and club soda nice to make me and the hubs watermelon margaritas. Yummy!

Stay cool while in the heat!  Hope you’re all enjoying your summer!

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