10 Simple Infused Water Recipes

I am in a unique position that requires me to daily remind people to drink water.  As odd as that may sound, as a nutrition counselor, it is one of the most basic tasks I do, and you would not believe how many people do not listen!  I have to resort to getting creative in how I motivate my clients to drink the optimal 64 ounces of water they minimally need daily.  I get it, though.  Not only are people busy, water is sometimes boring.  With so many sugary, artifically-colored and caffiene-laden beverages out there to drink, why would anyone choose water?  

Let's start with this: when you are dehydrated, even just mildly, your metabolism slows down, making you feel fatigued, and it is often the cause of headaches and body aches and cramps.  Also, your body's signal to drink more water is often mistaken as hunger pangs, causing you to eat more calories than you need.  If you are feeling achy, tired or randomly hungry, try a glass of water.  It might shut down those hunger pangs and perk you up.

We are constantly losing water throughout the day, and when it is estimated that over half of Americans are chronically dehydrated, you need to replenish the supply of water to your body to keep it functioning properly.   If you replace the lost water with sugared and caffienated beverages, they can cause more dehydration and add calories that your body does not detect.  "Fluid calories do not hold strong satiety properties, don't suppress hunger and don't elicit compensatory dietary responses," according to Richard D. Mattes, Professor of Food and Nutrition at Purdue University. His research concludes that, "when drinking fluid calories, people often end up eating more calories overall."

Here are ten more reasons to drink water, and these reasons are tasty, colorful and fun.  These recipes are the healthy answer to all of those awful, sugar and artificial color-filled liquid beverage mixes.  Pour yourself a pitcher of water, toss in the ingredients to these recipes, and in less than an hour, you will have delicious and exciting water treats in your refrigerator whenever you want. 

1. Classic Spa Water:
   1 sliced lemon and 1/2 sliced cucumber

2. Peaches and Rosemary: 
   1 cup frozen peach slices and 2-3 fresh rosemary sprigs

3. Orangey-Ginger: 
  1 Orange, segmented, with 1 Tablespoon thin, fresh ginger slices

4. Tropical Thunder: 
   1 cup frozen mango and pineapple chunks

5. Cherry LIme cocktail: 
   1 lime, sliced thinly, and 1 cup frozen or fresh pitted cherries. 

6. Lavender Strawberry-ade:
  1 cup frozen strawberries with 3-4 sprigs of fresh lavender

7. Kiwi Thyme:
    1 sliced kiwi and 2-3 sprigs of fresh thyme

8. Minty Watermelon:
    1 cup watermelon chunks with 1/4 cup mint leaves (I find it tastes mintier if you tear the leaves a bit.)

9. Mixed Berry:
    1 cup frozen berry mix--blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, strawberries (This is the most popular one I serve at parties. I just buy the bag of frozen organic berries and throw them in. Super easy, and they double as ice cubes to cool the water.)

10.  Melon Attack: 
     1 cup honeydew and cantaloupe chunks. 

Have you created a summertime flavored water that you are loving these days?  Share it with us on Faceboook!