Five drinks to help you stay healthy this summer

Summer is finally here! This means that shorts are out, sunscreen is on, and summer stolls are enjoyed with a trip to your local ice-cream parlour. When we are outside more and indulge in sweet summer treats, drinking plenty of fluid is especially important. Imogen Wintersohl offers recipes for the top five drinks to keep you cool and healthy this summer. 

On average, it is recommended that we should drink 2 litres per day, dependent on your weight, height and the season. This ensures that your body functions as it should: For example, drinking enough increases your brain power and provides energy, whilst promoting healthy weight management, improving your complexion, and boosting your immune system.

You might say, ‘2 litres, that’s quite a lot’ or ‘2 litres of water? No thanks, where is the fun in that?’. Especially, if you’re on the go, we often struggle to meet our daily recommendation of fluid intake. So let me try to change your mind, summer drinking (non-alcoholic for fluid intake) does not have to be dull and boring. Here are five ideas to make summer hydration fun, easy, and oh yes, also a little indulgent - Cheers!

1. Home-made lime-onade to keep you cool: Nothing says summer quite like home-made lemonade. To add a healthy twist on this nostalgic drink, make your own lime-onade! Combine 10 roughly chopped, pulpy limes with one litre of sparkling water and add brown sugar (2 tbsp), until it is just sweet enough for you. Add ice-cubes, share with friends, and enjoy!

2. Smoothie it up! Summer is the perfect time for smoothies with fruit growing in abundance. To meet your fluid intake with a twist, combine one cup of frozen berries – I use blueberries, black currants, black berries, strawberries – with half a banana, add about 300ml of water. Blitz it all up in your blender and serve cold.

3. Peppermint iced tea: How about tea as a summer drink? ‘Hot drinks in the heat? No thanks!’ That’s what went through my head the first time I was offered tea. But how about rethinking tea or ice-tea for a change and create your own, less sugar-laden summer refresher. Brew 500ml of peppermint tea – either use 2 teabags or one bunch of fresh mint. Let it steep for about 5 minutes if you are using a teabag and about 5-10 minutes if you are using fresh mint. Your tea should look refreshingly green. Let it cool in the fridge for about 30 minutes. Add fresh mint, 1 tsp of brown sugar and ice cubes in a glass each, add the tea, stir, and –voila! Home-made iced tea ready to be enjoyed!

4. Feeling fancy? How about this pomegranate mojito mocktail. It’s the perfect season for everything vibrant and this mocktail says it all: The day before your ‘mocktail’ occasion, freeze 3 tbsp worth of pomegranate seeds in ice-cube trays and top up with water to be frozen. On the day/night, tear half a bunch of mint into a large jug and quarter 2 limed into it. Bash the mint and lime in the jug to release their flavours and add 1 litre of pomegranate juice and 250 ml of lemonade (use homemade for less sugar!). Strain the pomegranate mix into a jug using a sieve and add 250ml of sparkling water. Add your seeded ice cubes to your glasses and garnish them with mint and lime slices. Pour your drink and enjoy with company!

5. Iced coffee the continental way. Brew 500 ml of coffee to your liking – I use a cafetiere/French press with 3-4 tbsp of ground coffee. Pour the coffee into cups and fill each cup 2/3. Add 1-2 scoops of vanilla ice-cream (or gelato!) to each cup of coffee, and if your feeling really indulgent simply add some whipped cream on top of that, (chocolate sprinkles also make for a great addition!). Drink, spoon, and enjoy this indulgently rich caffeine mess!

And if you still don’t feel inspired or simply pressed for time, how about chilling some sparkling water and adding some sliced lemon, lime, grapefruit or raspberries to your drink? After all, sparkles come in all shapes and sizes! Happy drinking!