Archive for the ‘water’ Category

Drink of the Day: KJ’s Sparkling Dessert

You know, I was going to write something meaningful today, but then I decided to go with something useful instead.

I’m sort of sugar-free these days, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t occasionally feel like something sweet. Feel, get it? Because when I do want something sweet, there are usually emotions involved.

So, here it goes. Whenever you need (or even just want) a quick sugar/calorie-free pick me up, viola:

KJ’s Sparkling Dessert in a Glass

1) Perrier water (or any other sparkling water, per your preference)
2) Organic Chocolate Extract (to taste, go slowly with this…we’re talking drops, not dropper-fulls)
2) Stevia (either regular or Vanilla Creme; again, so slowly as Stevia is about 1000 times sweeter than sugar and has a wicked aftertaste if you use too much)

Mix all ingredients in the most beautiful glass glass you can find (this is important). Sit back and enjoy!

It reminds me of some fountain drink – like a real fountain drink that you’d get at an old fashioned ice cream parlor – that I used to drink as a child.

Delicious, refreshingly sweet, and sugar-free! Yum! Besides the extra hydration is good for your skin!

Tired of water? Mix it up (and drink it down)

No matter whether it’s six or eight glasses a day, it’s common knowledge that the body needs water to function properly – it is primarily made of water after all! When you’re dieting or trying to lose fat, it’s even more important to drink water, as it’s the water (and the associated lymph) that carries all of that fat out of the system! When you drink lots of water (another recommendation is half of your body weight in ounces), you’re also less likely to be hungry, less likely to overeat or to fill up on junk in order to feel more energetic. The latter is especially true because water actually gives you energy by removing all of the toxic stuff out of your body! And if that wasn’t enough of a why, it also improves skin elasticity and makes you look younger!

Even though I know that drinking water is just as important (if not more so) as maintaining a healthy food diet and getting regular exercise, it tends to be the first thing I let slip when I’m tired or stressed. It’s ridiculous. Why would I stop doing something that’s so simple, especially when it gets me such great results? It’s particularly stupid because I’ll exercise and not drink enough water, which leads to an even more advanced stage of dehydration. Now a lot of people think that they’re not dehydrated because they’re not thirsty. Thirst is a warning sign! When you start feeling thirsty, it’s too late. Most nutritionists recommend that you take a sip of water every fifteen minutes! Whether you feel thirsty or not!

So why would I not drink water? Why might you not be drinking enough?

Personally, I get bored. It’s not that I don’t like the taste of water; I do. But then again I have a well and am not dependent on city tap water, which does (unfortunately) come in a variety of flavors, largely based on your location! But filters do work wonders and there are a number available all at varying price-points for sale on-line.

But, when I am legitimately tired of water, I do sub in other options that still count as water. So, how to get more water into your diet?

As I mentioned before, I make protein shakes. I tend to mix the protein powder and liquid with two trays of ice cubes; although frozen, ice does count as water! You even burn more calories because your body has to bring it up to temperature!

Another way to make water more exciting is just to simply make up a pitcher of ice water and cucumber slices and let the flavor seep in. I had this at a spa recently and it was fabulous! Unbelievably refreshing! Since then, I’ve seen people do the same thing with fresh mint, fresh blackberries or fresh raspberries.

My personal favorite, especially in the winter months (which, unfortunately are back on the horizon) is to drink caffeine-free herbal tea. Stay away from decaffeinated coffees or black tea, which contain marginal amounts of caffeine, as well as all of the residual chemicals that it took to decaffeinate it to begin with! This works especially well for me because you can really mix up the flavors and you can mess with the intensity and sweetness by varying the steeping time as well as the amount of sweetener (if any) that you use. My favorite sweetener is Stevia Plus, by Sweet Leaf. Stevia Plus is an all natural supplement that contains no saccharin, Nutrasweet, aspartame, refined sugar, maltodextrin fructose, or any artificial sweeteners of any kind! It’s called plus, because it also contains inulin fiber (F.O.S.) which selectively nourished the friendly bacteria (lactobaciilus and bifidobacteria) in the intestines!

During the winter I tend to drink eight to ten cups of herbal tea a day! I drink a number of brands, but my house tea is Celestial Seasonings. 1) It’s cheap (as am I). 2) There are a ton of flavors so I am less likely to get bored. 3) There is minimal packaging – they are the ones that don’t use strings or tags!

And for those who can’t imagine drinking hot tea in the summer (or are too impatient to brew it hot and then ice it), they have just come out with a product that steeps in cold water in just five minutes! Unfortunately only of of these is caffeine-free, but I’m hopeful they’ll expand the line if it’s a success! Or with enough push-back from interested buyers!

Another way I get my water in is to drink my green stuff mixed in 24 ounces of water! Again, cold improves the taste. Sometimes I toss the glass into the freezer for 15 minutes or I mix it with ice.

And, finally, a fourth way I get water in when I’m bored is to drop in a couple of nuun tablets in a quart sized Sigg bottle. Nuuns are electrolyte-enhance sports drink tabs, which I drink while I exercise, especially if I am doing something that is going to involve a lot of sweat. Six calories per tablet; all are caffeine free with the exception of the cola flavored one, which has about as much caffeine as a cup of green tea. So, although it doesn’t count as water, per say, because of the caffeine, it does actually taste enough like cola to kill the craving (that is, if you have craving for cola). Personally, the lemon-lime and ginger orange are my favorite!

So, if you find yourself feeling sluggish or overly hungry during the day, ask yourself the following question: How much water have I had today?

And if you’re not even close to 1/2 your body weight in ounces, drink some water! If you don’t like water (or think you don’t) because it doesn’t taste like anything, try something new to jazz it up. And you’d be surprised. Just as it does with sugar, the more water you drink, the more your body will want.

Let me know what you come up with!

Water – How Much is Enough?

The conventional wisdom on how much water you need to be healthy and hydrated is 8 cups (or 64 ounces) a day. But it’s important to note that that’s for the average person. Think about it, wouldn’t it make sense that someone who weighs 120 pounds would probably need to drink less water than someone who weighs 220 pounds? If you think yes, you’re right. Basically, you should drink 1/2 of your weight everyday in ounces. If you weigh 120 pounds, that means you need to drink at least 60 ounces of water a day. If you weigh 220 pounds, you need 110 ounces a day! Big difference.

The good news is that herbal tea (not decaf tea) can count towards your daily water intake. You can also add flavors to your water, such as a splash of lime, lemon, raspberry, mint, or even cucumber! And the jury is now out (again) on whether carbonated water actually leeches calcium.

The bad news, however, is that soda, alcohol, caffeinated beverages (and even decaffeinated beverages) actually dehydrate you!

So, figure out what you weigh, do a couple of quick calculations, and drink up!

Note: according to some scientists/nutritionists, drinking cold water actually burns more calories than warm water, as your body has to work harder to warm it up!