At last, there’s a hot nutrition trend that is actually worth the hype. You’ve probably seen recipes for water infusions (and water bottles for making them, too) all over the Internet. They work wonders for getting people to drink more water, which is more important than you may think. Although most people know that they need to drink more water, up to 75 percent of the American population falls short of the 10 daily cups prescribed by the Institute of Medicine. That means that most of your friends and family—and perhaps, even you—are most likely functioning in what is medically described as a chronic state of dehydration. This is even more important for exercisers, because they’re even more affected by the negative impacts of dehydration. In fact, as little as 2 percent dehydration can have a significantly harmful impact on performance. This is just one place where water infusions come in handy.
Water infusions not only taste great and encourage people to drink more and stay hydrated, thanks to the foods or herbs that they’re made with they also are typically packed with disease-fighting nutrients to give your body a slight edge. Give the following recipes a try or use them as an inspiration to make your own water infusions. Feel free to mix and match the combinations based on your favorite flavors and the health benefits you’re looking for. We find that combining several ingredients produces our favorite water infusions.
There’s really no wrong way or right way to make water infusions, so you don’t have to worry about messing up—even if you don’t cook! Just remember to muddle fruits like berries by using a spoon to gently press them into the side of the glass to release some of the beneficial components.
Water Infusion Ingredients to Try
Lemon: Lemons add a refreshing perk to any drink. They contain a compound called d-limonene that promotes the activity of a liver enzyme that converts harmful, toxic substances to less harsh chemicals. Lemon is packed with potent antioxidants, including vitamin C, which mops up free radicals from environmental toxins, stress, alcohol and fatty foods and helps to prevent them from damaging your body. Vitamin C also keeps the skin youthful, radiant and elastic by helping to boost levels of collagen.
Take a few sips of these lemon water infusions:
Ginger: Ginger has a fresh, biting and slightly sweet flavor and contains powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory components. As an antioxidant it is able to neutralize free radicals and protect them from harming cells. Ginger also soothes the stomach and intestinal tract.
Give these two ginger water infusions a sip:
Mint: Mint adds a refreshing, sweet and mellow twist to water infusions. It contains rosmarinic acid, which helps to calm your digestive tract. Mint acts as a peacemaker in the body by calming the stomach, easing indigestion and possibly by improving the flow of bile through the stomach, which aids in speeding and easing digestion. Mint also contains immune-boosting vitamin C, as well as powerful antioxidants that mop up damage and lead to disease.
Try these mint water infusions:
Berries: If you’re looking for a little sweetness in your sip, berries are for you. They rank among the top of produce in terms of their antioxidant potential. This means they are superstars when it comes to neutralizing toxins and helping to rid them from your body. Research suggests that berries may actually assist in weight loss, too, thanks to their phytochemical C3G that may increase production of both adiponectin (which enhances fat metabolism) and leptin (which suppresses appetite).
Sip on these berry water infusions: