Fruit flavored water is naturally flavored with fresh fruit and herbs and sure to quench your thirst in a healthy, refreshing way!
Water is crucial to our health. And that’s that! No really, it’s that simple when it comes to the important role water plays in every bodily function. Every system in our bodies depends on water. Lack of water in our bodies, or dehydration, can sap your energy, make you feel light-headed, and cause muscle weakness. Despite knowing we need to drink water, many of us fall short of the recommend amount. I know I do because I’m just sick and tired of drinking plain old water! That’s why I started naturally flavoring my water with fresh fruit and veggies! But before I get into my favorite flavor combinations, I want to share more about the WHY behind water and our health. You know, talking a little nutrition science while that part of my brain is fully hydrated… and rested!
How Much Water Do We Need?
There are two schools of thought when it comes to how much water our bodies need everyday:
- Eight 8-ounce (oz) glasses of water/day:The “8´8 rule”—drink eight 8-oz glasses of water/day (about 1.9 liters). You also could state the rule as “drink eight 8-oz glasses of fluids a day,” because all fluids count toward the daily total. Though this approach is not supported by scientific evidence, many people use this basic rule as a guideline for how much water and other fluids to drink.
- Dietary recommendations:The Institute of Medicine recommends that men consume 3 liters (about 13 cups) of total beverages/day and women consume 2.2 liters (about 9 cups) of total beverages/day. These guidelines are based on national food surveys that assessed individuals’ average fluid intakes.
Ugh. 8 glasses or more seems daunting, right?! Well guess what! Your diet, including ALL of the beverages you drink, can provide a large portion of what you need. Fruits and vegetables, besides serving as good sources of vitamins, minerals, and fiber, contain lots of water. For example, oranges are 87% water, and cucumbers are 95% water. Milk, juice, and other beverages also have large amounts of water. Conversely, dried fruits, nuts, grain products, and baked goods generally contain less water.
You May Need More Water If….
You may need to modify your total fluid intake from these recommended amounts depending on several factors:
- If you exercise or engage in any activity that makes you sweat, you will need to drink extra water to compensate for that fluid loss.
- You need to drink additional water in hot or humid weather to help lower your body temperature and to replace what you lose through sweating.
- Some signs and symptoms of illnesses, such as fever, vomiting and diarrhea, cause your body to lose extra fluids, so increasing fluid intake will help to prevent dehydration.
- Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding need additional water to stay hydrated and to replenish the fluids lost, especially when nursing. The Institute of Medicine recommends that pregnant women drink 2.3 liters (nearly 10 cups) of fluids/day and that women who breastfeed consume 3.1 liters (about 13 cups) of fluids/day.
What About Kids?!
As a rule of thumb, to get enough water, your child or teen should drink at least 6 to 8 cups of water a day and eat the recommended number of servings of fruits and vegetables every day. Also, pay special attention to your child or teen’s water consumption when he or she is physically active. Before, during and after any physical activity, kids need to drink plenty of water, especially in hot weather. I know for Joey, I’m always offering water and/or milk with meals and before and after playtime.
5 Fruit-Flavored Water Ideas
One trick I’ve employed this summer to reach my fluid needs is to naturally flavor water with fruit! And then I gobble up the fruit once I’m done drinking the water…. The flavor combinations are endless. But these 5 fruit-flavored water ideas are definitely my family’s favorite. Mainly because they are flavored with our favorite fruits! For the water to fruit measurement ratio I follow the 2:1 rule. 2 quarts of water [8 cups] to 1 cup of fruit [total- so if you are using 2 fruits mix a ½ cup of each]. If I’m adding fresh herbs, I’ll just throw in whatever I have, which usually ends up being a ¼ cup sliced then meddled.Flavor water with fresh fruit and veggies to quench your thirst in a healthy, refreshing way! Click To Tweet
- Cucumber Cooler: Lemon + cucumber slices.
- Strawberry Basil: Strawberry slices + chopped fresh basil.
- Just Citrus: Lemon + orange slices.
- Berry Breeze: Blueberries + strawberry slices.
- Watermelon Lime: Watermelon cubes and lime slices!
All you need is a 2-quart pitcher or mason jar [you could use an 8-oz glass too and just eyeball how much fruit you need], a wooden spoon to muddle the fruit, ice cubes and water! Once you choose your flavor combination, place the fruit at the bottom of the pitcher. Muddle to release some of the juices. Then add the ice and water and voila! Your thirst is quenched. Oh and if you don’t have fresh fruit go ahead and use frozen. You probably won’t need ice cubes then!
Data are from Institute of Medicine of the National Academies. Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) Tables. Recommended Daily Allowance and Adequate Intake Values: Total Water and Macronutrients.