We need to drink to stay alive. It’s even more important than eating, at least in terms of how often we need to drink to survive. What you drink really matters though, if you want to be healthy. North Americans are drinking more calories than ever before, which is adding to our weight problem. In general, drinking does not make us less hungry, so when we drink a sugary soft drink, we are just adding calories to our diet, not to mention the negative impact on our blood sugar.
What are the healthful fluids we can be drinking? Here are my top Five:
1. Water. By far the winner. Water is what our body needs, so why not drink it straight? Filtered tap water is the best. In Many communities, water coming out of the tap is not that good for you, but simple carbon filtration is usually good enough. Bottled water is a bad idea for two reasons. One is that you don’t really know where it came from, and the other is that toxic chemicals leach out of the plastic bottles water comes in. For more on plastic bottles, see this post. For most people, six to eight glasses of water a day is optimal.
2. Ginger tea. It is warming and it stimulates digestion. It can ease allergic reactions.
3. Chamomile tea. It is very soothing to the nervous system and stomach.
4. Green tea. In moderation, green tea is very beneficial for its antioxidants. People who are sensitive to caffeine, should avoid it. Be careful of its tendency dehydrate you.
5. Freshly made fruit and vegetable juices. These are a magnificent source of antioxidants and other health promoting phytochemicals. Drink them within a few minutes of juicing them, as they lose their goodness very quickly. These are rather high in calories, but most people don’t have time to overdue them. Besides, the health benefits far outweigh the problems, unless you have serious blood sugar issues.