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July 16, 2013

Alternative ways to quench summer thirst

Staying hydrated is important, especially during the summer months.

Here are a few ideas for drinks, other than plain water, to quench your thirst.

Though it has not been a particularly sunny summer, it is still hot and very humid. It is extra important to keep hydrated on warm days, since your body loses a lot of fluid through sweating.

Although I do not promote drinking sweetened beverages regularly, it is nice to have an alternate to water occasionally in the summertime.

SMOOTHIES

Smoothies are a great way to begin a hot day, since they double as breakfast.

Recently I tried adding kale to a smoothie, since I have been receiving greens weekly from a Community-Supported Agriculture operation, and was pleasantly surprised.

Though many combinations of fruit, yogurt and juice or milk are delicious pureed, adding some greens can boost nutrition and use up extra greens before they wilt or you are delivered more. To make a green smoothie try blending 2 cups of kale leaves, 1 ripe banana, a ripe pear and enough skim milk or milk substitute to cover all of the ingredients in the blender.

You can also add greens to other colored smoothies, but I find it makes a red smoothie look a little brown, so if you are serving it to a skeptic, use a dark travel mug.

WATERMELON COOLERS

Watermelon coolers have become a new family favorite for a summertime beverage. Any time you have extra watermelon, preferably refrigerated, just blend it.

Since watermelon has such a high water content, it turns into a great beverage without having to add anything. Two cups of diced watermelon has only 80 calories, and the only sugars are naturally occurring.

You could doctor this up with a little seltzer or some mint leaves, but it is really refreshing and kid friendly as is.

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