No, water isn’t the most interesting drink on the planet, and no, that isn’t likely to change. Unfortunately, it is one of the healthiest drinks out there, and it helps regulate body temperature, flush out toxins, helps your digestive system, and balances blood sugar among other things. Where water is particularly healthy is when it is drunk instead of other, more sugary alternatives. Research into the full extent of how unhealthy these drinks are is ongoing, but so far we know that women who drink an average of two soft drinks (or other sugary drinks) a day are more likely to develop risk factors for heart disease and other cardiovascular illnesses. We have also recently discovered that teenagers and adolescents who consume a lot of sugar in their drinks are more prone to violence than those who don’t. Despite knowing that water is good for us, people aren’t spending enough time drinking it. According to research done at Rockefeller University, almost 10% of people don’t drink water at all, with a further 28% only drinking two glasses per day. While the ‘eight glasses of water’ myth has been debunked, it is still a good idea to drink water often throughout your day.
Tea is a good way to drink more water because it adds flavour and interest without adding any calories to the drink. If you aren’t used to drinking tea or don’t like regular tea, have fun experimenting: there are hundreds of flavours of tea to choose from, even when you break tea down into the separate categories of black, green and white. Have some fun picking one you like!
If you decide you like tea, then you could brew up a large amount, and keep it in the fridge for drinking throughout the day. Drinking tea like this is also good for hot climates.
If water alone is boring, or you simply don’t enjoy the taste, try adding some fruit or vegetables to your water to boost the flavour. You could even try using herbs if you like! Apples and lemons are good fruit for this, though cucumber and tomatoes could be interesting choices too.
If you like a bit of kick in your drinks, try this: simmer a cinnamon stick in roughly a cup (or eight fluid ounces) of water. When this has infused, it shouldn’t take too long, combine it with a pitcher of cold water for a drink which has a lovely fresh blast of cinnamon flavouring in it!
Not only does cinnamon taste good in water, but it also has health benefits which will be added to those of the water: cinnamon has been proven to help lower both blood sugar and cholesterol.
If you don’t have the time to make your own water alternatives, you can always buy them. Most shops will carry a few brands of water which are flavoured with some all-natural unsweetened fruit, vegetable, and herb flavourings. Most of these offerings have no calories, but be sure to check the ingredient list to make sure that there is no added sweeteners or preservatives.
If you’re still not warming up to the idea of drinking still water, try carbonated water, and you can even make it at home! Many shops carry carbonated water with natural flavourings and no added sweeteners.
Carbonated water can also be a good choice if you are used to drinking soft drinks. You are still getting the carbonation, but none of the harmful side effects of soft drinks.
A sweet idea for water is using ice cubes to jazz the glass up. Whether you freeze coffee, fruit juice, or pomegranate seeds, using ice cubes can impart flavour and colour to your glass of water, making drinking it more fun!
Fruit juice by itself is loaded down with sugar; it isn’t quite as bad as a soft drink would be, but it isn’t great. However, just adding a touch of your favourite fruit juice to a glass or pitcher of water can give it both flavour and colour, just with the disadvantage of lots of sugar.
Even if later on during the meal you intend to have another drink, begin by having a glass of water, especially if you’re going to be drinking alcohol. You will get some water in your system, and the water will clear your taste buds to enjoy the meal!
If you find yourself unable to drink more water, try eating it! There are many kinds of soup which are primarily water or water-based, including broths and consommé soup, so try one of them. If you can’t make soup, make sure that you are buying one which is low in sodium, and try to avoid soup which has cream in it, as that adds calories.
There are water purifiers which can be attached directly to the tap, and some of these come with flavour attachments. Try to avoid adding too much of the flavour, to avoid getting too many sugar and additives in your water.
Hopefully, this article has explained how to make water a little bit more enjoyable for you. Next time you head to the water cooler, have some of these ideas in mind.