Health-Conscious Alternatives to Water
Drinking enough water is a vital part of maintaining a healthy body, but did you know there are several other beverages that can provide even more nutritional benefits? Give yourself a wellness boost this spring with these drink options.
A cold glass of freshly-pressed green juice is a great way to give your body a generous serving of vitamins, antioxidants, plant minerals, and chlorophyll. To make green juice, you just need a juicer and any green vegetable - kale, celery, spinach, and parsley are popular choices. What’s the difference between juicing and blending? The juicing process removes the pulp and fiber from vegetables so your body is able to absorb the nutrients more readily. You’ll get the most benefits from green juice by drinking a variety of fruit and veggie combinations, so don’t be afraid to experiment. It’s best to drink green juice within 30 minutes of making it to ensure maximum freshness.
The health benefits of drinking tea have been widely documented. A 2016 study of nearly 1000 people in Singapore found that regularly drinking green, black, or oolong tea was linked to a lower risk of cognitive disorders. These three teas contain an antioxidant called EGCG that protects cells in the body from oxidative stress and fights inflammation. Tea also contains L-theanine, an amino acid that helps with relaxation and focus. Green tea has specifically been shown to lower cortisol, reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression, and improve memory.
Kombucha is a cold fermented tea drink believed to have Japanese or Chinese origins. Kombucha comes with all the health advantages of regular tea, plus bacteria-fighting antioxidants and gut-nourishing probiotics. Recent lab studies of kombucha have pointed to several other potential health
benefits, including lower blood sugar, improved cholesterol, and the prevention of cancerous cell growth.
Think of coconut water as a delicious alternative to sports drinks - you get the electrolytes minus the sugar and artificial flavors. Coconut water is found inside young coconuts and helps nourish them while they grow. Several studies have shown that coconut water is even more effective than regular water at replacing hydration after exercise (and equal to high-electrolyte sports drinks). Coconut water is also a good source of magnesium, potassium, Vitamin C and other antioxidants.
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Et al. 2016. Tea Consumption Reduces the Incidence of Neurocognitive Disorders: Findings from the Singapore Longitudinal Aging Study. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27925140/
Leech, Joe. 2018. 8 Evidence-Based Health Benefits of Kombucha. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/8-benefits-of-kombucha-tea#TOC_TITLE_ HDR_6
Spritzler, Franziska. 2018. 8 Science-Based Health Benefits of Coconut Water.
Willeumier, Kristen. 2021. 3 Drinks A Neuroscientist Recommends For Better Brain Health. Mind Body Green.