When the dog days of summer hit, there are few things more refreshing than a nice, tall glass of lemonade or sweet tea. These drinks can quench your thirst and make you feel all happy and mellow but, unfortunately, they do little to support your fitness goals. Most ready-to-drink lemonades and teas are full of added sugar, making them a gigantic calorie bomb!
Lucky for you, there are lots of delicious drink recipes out there that will hydrate you, revive you, and, in some cases, help you lose weight!
Try Flavored Water:
Staying hydrated is one of the most important steps in keeping your body working as well as it can. Every part of your body -- muscles, cells, and organs, require water to function. What's more, staying hydrated can help you reach your weight loss goals! Because losing weight isn't complicated enough on its own, dehydration often presents itself as hunger. This means you end up reaching for, and consuming, extra calories when all you needed was a big drink of water. So, make your necessary daily water intake a little more enjoyable by adding some flavor! Infused water is the perfect solution! You can do whatever strikes your fancy. Fill a jug full of water and add some lemon and lime slices. Within an hour, you will have a tasty water based drink with some hints of citrus. Citrus not your thing? Strawberries and cucumber is also an amazing combination. Or cucumber and mint! You're only limited by your imagination!
[bctt tweet="5 Refreshing Summer Drinks That Shrink Your Tummy"]
Add Watermelon To Your Smoothies:
One way to reduce your calorie consumption and increase your hydration is to use watermelon as a base in your smoothies. Watermelon is loaded with water (obviously) but it also contains a number of useful and important nutrients like lycopene and arginine. Lycopene
is the pigment that gives watermelon (as well as tomatoes and pink grapefruit) their bright red/pink color and has been shown to fight certain cancers and reduce the risk of heart disease by reducing triglycerides and LDL-cholesterol levels. Arginine
is an amino acid that has been found to decrease body fat while increasing lean muscle mass. Throw some watermelon in a blender with some ice, and whatever other fruit you desire, and sip away until your heart's content.
Brew Your Own Iced Tea:
Pick a herb, learn how to brew it and BAM! you've got tea! We suggest going with peppermint! Steep one or two teaspoons of dried or fresh mint per cup of water and leave for 10 mins. If you are pressed for time, you can always use quality peppermint tea bags. Peppermint can help ease digestion and help your stomach process fatty foods, helping you avoid bloating. It can also calm muscle spasms so if you're feeling a little sore after your workout, this might be the wisest choice. Drinking it warm can help you feel cooler in the warm temperatures --counterintuitive, we know. Or, you can add some ice and you've got a chilled summertime classic without all the added sugar.
When it comes to losing weight and staying hydrated, pineapple can be your friend. Mixing up a smoothie that contains pineapple will provide you with a dose of bromelain, an enzyme that helps you break down proteins, avoid bloating, and ease digestion. Here is one of our favorite pineapple beverages (for more of our favorite recipes, check out the BodyRock Meal Plan
Kick It Old School With Green Tea:
Green tea is a great 'diet' drink. Green tea contains catechins which are antioxidants, shown in many studies, to help you reduce belly fat. As a bonus, these compounds can increase your fat burn during aerobic exercise if you consume them before a workout! If you want to help your metabolism get going, try adding pinch of cayenne pepper! The heat of the cayenne helps kick start thermogenesis, which increases your calorie burn!
At the end of the day, water is the best option for hydration but we do understand that it is not always the most appealing. So the next time you are looking for something different, something with a sweeter, more refreshing flavor, put down your can of soda or sugar laced lemonade and try one of these drinks instead!
What is your favorite hydrating beverage? Share your recipe with us!
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