Studies show that when your body is dehydrated your cells produce more cortisol, one of the stress hormones. Your body is about 60% water after all so this makes a lot of sense to me, once I stop to think about it. Cortisol being released in your body can be a signal that your cells are physically stressed out – they need more water to function at their peak. I’m sure you’ve felt some of the effects of your cells being dehydrated, including headaches, feeling foggy, and thirst masked as hunger. Add increased cortisol to the list and I’d say this is a problem most people would want to solve.
Luckily the solution is easy! Sipping water throughout the day can quench your cells’ thirst and at least keep one cause of stress at bay. Unfortunately, being well-hydrated won’t take care of the stress from your upcoming presentation at work or solve the weekly carpool juggle. If only!
Now if I’m going to commit to drinking 8+ glasses of water a day, I’m going to need to mix in variety somehow. I recently discovered the idea of creating a detox water. My go-to drink can become even more powerful with the addition of a few fruits and vegetables. I love the idea of infused water for the flavor variety and for its awesome detox benefits. Plus, it makes me feel like I have a little part of a spa day at home anytime.
There are so many possibilities for combinations of fruits and vegetables, you’ll never get bored. This recipe is one of my new favorites, it combines strawberries, lime, mint, and cucumber to provide a whole range of benefits:
• Strawberries are a great source of polyphenols, helping you burn excess fat
• Lime & cucumber are rich in vitamin C and other antioxidants, helping to fight and flush out free radicals which attack healthy cells
• Mint leaves are a well-known appetite suppressant, helping you judge whether that feeling in your stomach really is a sign of hunger or just dehydration
Not to mention some of the more obvious benefits like the refreshing taste and pretty colors. Something about a colorful drink just makes me more likely to keep drinking
it. Luckily in this case, that’s exactly what we’re going for.
Some of my tips for getting the most out of this recipe include making a big batch at the beginning of the week and keeping in a pitcher in your fridge. This recipe is scaled for 4 servings, but I’ve even quadrupled it to keep a bunch on hand. Having this water ready to go when I open the fridge has really helped me stick to my goal of increasing my water intake – see if it works for you too!
You can also consider saving the fruits and vegetables after your pitcher is empty and using them to infuse another batch of water. The flavor will be a little less intense, but is still enough to satisfy me. If I’m honest, I’ve actually used the same ingredients for three batches to really get the most out of it. One time of prepping for three batches of infused water? That’s a ratio I can live with.
Make sure you give the fruits and vegetables plenty of time to sit in the water to really infuse their flavors. I like to make mine on a Sunday night so it’s ready to go on Monday morning. For an added twist, add some seltzer water to the mix to quench a craving for carbonation. If you go this route, I’d add the seltzer to the mix one glass at a time to keep the bubbles extra bubbly.
(Make this next: Orange Carrot Soup)
- 1 cup strawberries, sliced
- 1 lime, sliced
- ¼ medium cucumber, sliced
- ¼ cup fresh mint leaves
- 4 cups purified water
- Ice cubes to serve
- In a large pitcher place all the ingredients except ice cubes.
- Mix to combine.
- Allow mixture to steep in the refrigerator for 4-8 hours.
- Serve with ice cubes.