3 Easy and Delightful Summer Drinks

July 25, 2018


With summer in full swing, we are enjoying being outdoors while the warm weather lasts! But, while we enjoy the activities and exploration of the outdoors during these hot summer days, it’s important to remember to keep ourselves hydrated.

Dehydration is one of the most common health hazards among older adults. According to Lawrence Armstrong, a researcher with the University of Connecticut, “after age 50, our ability to recognize thirst decreases and our kidneys lose some of their precision in regulating the body’s water supply.”

Fun Summer Drinks

The solution is simple, drink more water! However, plain old water can get boring. There are many refreshing and easy ways to take in fluids during the hot summer months. Here are a few drink ideas to liven up your beverage selection.

Raspberry Lemonade

Lemonade has been a summer staple for many years. But, have you tried it with other fruits as well? Raspberry lemonade is perfect for enjoying a sunny summer day. The raspberries add a tangy flavor to the tart lemonade.

Raspberry Lemonade

(4 servings - serving size about 1 (7 oz.) glass)

  • 1 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 cups of water
  • ½ cup of sugar
  • 1 tablespoon fresh or frozen raspberry puree, strained
  • Ice cubes

In a bowl, whisk the 2 cups of water with the lemon juice, sugar and raspberry puree until the sugar is dissolved. Serve in a glass filled halfway with ice. You can also chill in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

Lemon, Cucumber, Mint Infused Water

Infused water is an excellent alternative to just plain water. Health benefits of infused water include weight loss, improved digestive health, and improved mood and energy levels to name a few. Lemon, cucumber, and mint infused water is refreshing without the added sugar and calories.

Lemon, Cucumber, Mint Infused Water

(5 servings)

  • 8 cups of water
  • 2 cups thinly sliced cucumber
  • 2 small lemons sliced with rind removed
  • ½ cup of torn, fresh mint leaves

In a large pitcher, stir together water, cucumber, lemons and mint leaves. Cover and place in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours. If you do not finish your infused water by the end of the first day, strain out the solids.

Mango Green Tea

Get a taste of the tropical islands when you sip on this refreshing drink. Green tea is known for its antioxidants which prevent cell damage. In fact, research by the National University of Singapore suggests that regularly drinking green or black tea may cut the risk of dementia in older adults by 50 percent. It can also help to lower cholesterol levels and increase bone density. Try this Mango Green Tea recipe for a healthy pick-me-up.

Mango Green Tea

(3 servings)

  • 1 cup brewed green tea (2 tea bags to 1 cup water)
  • 2 cups mango nectar
  • Ice cubes

Garnish (optional)

  • Mint sprigs
  • Mango slivers

In a pitcher, mix the brewed green tea and mango. Serve in a glass over ice. Garnish with mint sprigs and the mango slivers.

These drinks are great to serve during a party or put in a bottle to take with you while out and about exploring the Hudson Valley or any other outdoor activity.

Symptoms of Dehydration

There are a few ways to know if you are suffering from dehydration. Watch out for these signs:

Muscle cramps. It’s natural for our bodies to sweat when we are in a hot environment. Older adults tend to sweat more and may not realize it. Since the human body only has so much fluid to go around, it prioritizes to the area of the body most vital such as the brain, circulatory system and other organs. If the nerves that connect to muscles are depleted of water, they begin to contract or spasm.

Headaches. When you are deprived of water, it causes the blood to be more concentrated. This, in turn, causes inflammatory proteins to circulate in the blood and can aggravate the nerves surrounding the brain.

Dizziness. Lightheadedness and dizziness typically happen after performing strenuous activity. Your body is directing blood to your muscles and when it doesn’t have enough blood to pump and the blood vessels in your brain dilate, it causes dizziness.

Constipation. When there is not enough fluid available, the colon redirects water into the bloodstream. This causes harder stool to pass and can be worsened by eating a high fiber diet like fruits and vegetables. If not enough water is taken in, the food basically sits in your gut until it has enough water to pass.

The Institute of Medicine recommends that women should drink at least 11 cups of water every day and men should drink at least 15 cups. With drinks like these along with drinking regular water, it will be easy to be sure that you are drinking enough fluids to keep your body hydrated and refreshed.

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