Hydration Tips

17 Of The Best Hydrating Foods

Nutrition Facts, Healthy Benefits, Tasty Recipes

Healthy And Tasty Treat Ideas That Hydrate And Satisfy

1-BABY CARROTS

– Originally the idea of baby carrots was developed in the 1980’s by a farmer from California, who wanted to have less waste with his misshapen carrots that were ‘too ugly’ to sell and caused significant crop loss. He thought of the idea of ‘baby carrots’ (cut and shaped from larger carrots). Since being cut and shaped by a machine, baby carrots are now grown and bred for color and sweetness.
According to Andrew Weil, M.D (drweil.com), “Baby carrots are rinsed in a chlorine wash to eliminate bacteria (including E. coli and Salmonella) that can cause food-borne illnesses. Afterward, they’re rinsed again with potable water to remove the chlorine. Most other pre-cut vegetables and fruit are treated the same way. If any e-mail warning you receive says that the white film that develops on stored baby carrots is the “chlorine rising to the surface,” that’s not true either. The film is a result of the dehydration of the cut carrots – you would see the same thing if you cut a regular carrot and stored it in the refrigerator.”

Baby carrots are said to hold a larger quantity of water than regular carrots, but taste and personal preference is the final deciding factor. We switched to organic carrots cut in small sizes for snacks instead, because of taste.

Just one serving provides 2.9% dietary fiber, 275% Vitamin A, 5% Vitamin B-6, 4% Vitamin C and Iron, 3% Calcium, and 1% Protein. (Source: Wikipedia)

2-BELL PEPPERS

– Yellow bell peppers are high in Vitamin C, filled with Niacin, contain 10% of your daily Folat (B Vitamin) intake requirement. Trace nutrients compliment the nutritional value of these hydrating peppers with riboflavin, thiamine and vitamin B6 compliment this . All this is great, but too often we get stuck with the mindset of not knowing how to eat bell peppers.

From salad and soup to skewer yellow bell peppers are easy to prepare, stuff and snack on.

To eat yellow bell peppers:

  • Cut them into strips and use for dipping
  • Add chopped peppers to a green salad.
  • Stir chopped yellow bell peppers into a homemade vegetable soup, chili or casserole.
  • Saute yellow peppers with chopped onions and minced garlic side dish.
  • For homemade salsa combine fresh tomatoes, onions, garlic and yellow bell peppers.
  • Fill a whole-wheat pita pocket with hummus and yellow bell pepper strips for a quick and easy lunch.
    (Source: healthyeating.sfgate.com)

3-CANTALOUPE

– honeydew, cantaloupe, watermelon, and sharlyn melon are always popular refreshing and hydrating melon choices. But cantaloupe gets an excellent rating for both vitamin C and vitamin A (carotenoids). Very good in potassium too, and a good supplier for a host of B vitamins (B1, B3, B6, and folate) as well as vitamin K, magnesium, and fiber.
When the edible seeds of the cantaloupe are eaten, this melon also provides a measurable about of omega-3 fat in the form of alpha-linolenic acid.
(Source: whmalen.com)

Ideally, cantaloupe is simply served – for example:

  • Cantaloupe Water: Add some sparkling water to fresh squeezed cantaloupe juice
  • Cold Soup: In a blender or food processor, purée cantaloupe and peeled soft peaches. Add lemon juice and honey as desired for taste.
  • Main meal or snack: Pile yogurt and chopped mint on top of cantaloupe slices.
  • Fruit Bowl: Slice melons in half horizontally, scoop out seeds and use each half as a fruit bowl.

For a delicious tasting cantaloupe salad try this recipe:

Summer Melon with Fig and Prosciutto – Makes about 8, 2 Cup servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 Sharlyn melon, peeled, seeded, and cut into medium cubes (about 4 cups)*
  • 1 honeydew melon, peeled, seeded, and cut into medium cubes (about 4 cups)
  • 1 cantaloupe, peeled, seeded, and cut into medium cubes (about 4 cups)
  • 3 ounces prosciutto di Parma, julienned
  • 1 bunch basil
  • 8 fresh dark-skinned figs, trimmed and quartered
  • 1/4 pound arugula
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 (4-ounce) block ricotta salata, shaved, for garnish
  • 1 tablespoon crushed red pepper, for garnish

Preparation:

    • For each serving, place 1/2 cup of each melon in the center of the plate; place about 1/3 ounce prosciutto on top of the melon, followed by a few basil leaves, 4 fig quarters, and a few arugula leaves.
    • Drizzle each serving with a little olive oil, and garnish with the shaved ricotta salata and a dash of crushed red pepper.

* Note: If you can’t find Sharlyn melon, use extra honeydew or cantaloupe.
(Source: health.com Recipe Source: Andrew Swallow

4-CELERY

– Not just a garnish anymore! Celery is rich in vitamin K, and it also contains folate, vitamin A, potassium, and vitamin C. Dietary fiber: Although celery is mainly water, but it is also a good source of dietary fiber.

Used as a snack or as a flavor addition to most any recipe – For instance smoothies are often made better with a celery stick. Even peanut butter and celery taste great!  (Source: medicalnewstoday.com)

5-COCONUT WATER

– The real stuff . . . Natural and refreshing, with a sweet, nutty taste. It contains easily digested carbohydrate in the form of sugar and electrolytes. This is not the Same as high-fat coconut milk or oil. Coconut water is a clear liquid in the fruit’s center that is tapped from young, green coconuts.

Described as “The Latest Health Craze,” Coconut water is a low calorie, naturally fat AND cholesterol free hydrating liquid with more potassium than four bananas.
Athletes swear by its hydration qualities.

Coconut water, if you can drink enough of it and tolerate the taste and it falls short with strenuous exercise in hot temperatures – lacking the carbs for fast recovery that athletes need. Not enough research has been conducted to prove the hyped benefits advertised – But it’s great when used as an all natural low calorie, hydration resource that does add potassium to your diet.
(Source: WebMD.com)

6-CUCUMBERS – CUCUMBER SALAD

– Skip flavored water and enjoy the nutrients and benefits of water-laden fruits and vegetables! And a cucumber salad is so simple and easy to make! Cucumbers contain 2% Dietary fiber, 1% Protein, 4% Potassium, 4% Vitamin C, 3% Magnesium, 2% Vitamin A, and 1% Iron and Calcium in just one serving.

Ingredients and Directions:

  • Add cucumber, tomato and red onion to a bowl with a leak-proof and sealable lid cover.
  • Add garlic salt, pepper and basil to taste.
  • Seal bowl and shake.
  • Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
    (Recipe Source: food.com)

7-JELLO – FROZEN ICE CUBE TRAY TREATS

– The big deal about jello is its High in anti-inflammatory amino acids like glycine and proline. Add to that the fact that jello is made mostly of water. Health benefits have included claims of helping to promote restful sleep, acting as a tool to improve memory, and learning, helping to control blood pressure, increasing hair and nail growth, helping assist the proper functioning of nerves and muscles, as well as helping digestion by soothing the intestinal tract.

Jello-Good jello, not to be confused with the conventional style of jello on the supermarket shelf that is packed with artificial garbage, but jello in its natural state, which means making it yourself.

Our own recipe comes from mamanatural.com where we begin with a high quality gelatin product (She recommends buying outside of a grocery store, so we do order our gelatin online). She warns that pineapple juice enzymes keep jello from setting and recommends not using that ingredient.
Next choose your favorite (available by season) fruit like cherries, oranges, or grapes, . . .

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups of juice, preferable organic and freshly made or, “not from concentrate.”
  • 2 TB of gelatin
  • Raw honey, coconut nectar or stevia
  • 1/2-1 cup of raw fruit or 2 TB of fruit rind (optional)
  • Top with raw cream if desired

Directions:

  • Pour your juice into a saucepan.
  • Add in 2 TB of gelatin and stir until the gelatin is dissolved.
  • Turn on heat to medium and let simmer for about 10 minutes.
  • Turn off heat and let sit for 1-2 minutes. Don’t let jello sit long or it will start to clump.
  • Stir and taste. Add and mix in sweetener if you desire.
  • Pour mixture into a jello mold (any glass bowl will work… even ice cube trays!)
  • Put jello into refrigerator and let sit for at least 3-4 hours. But it’s better to leave jello overnight.
    (Sources: mamanatural.com, and livestrong.com)

8-LETTUCE/SALAD GREENS

– The most nutritious salad greens choices are dark leafed to absorb more sun which helps them synthesize more vitamins. For example, red leaf, butterhead and romaine lettuce varieties. Iceberg packs its own punch in water content – 96% to be exact, but it has fewer health benefits than it’s darker leafed buddies. And if you really want a green leaf, try Kale, Swiss Chard, or Spinach varieties.

For the best way to prepare a healthy broth, or soup you can use a regular blender, but for our preferred best results we use a high speed commercial blender that chops up everything. We love using all of a vegetable or fruit to benefit from all the healthy parts of it (for instance cantaloupe seeds provide Omega 3, etc . . . ). And we got a great warranty with ours too! If you just want a blender that’s fast, small, lightweight, and can be taken to work, then you might try and immersion blender instead. Juicing wastes too much of the healthy parts of the food and it’s messy to clean most any juicer, so we found these blender tools to be useful, easier alternatives.

9-MILK

– Milk is an efficient hydration resource and here’s why. When you drink water, your kidneys want to get rid of the extra unabsorbed fluids through urination. But with milk, a liquid beverage that includes nutrients and electrolytes (sodium and potassium), then your stomach slows down to empty and your kidneys are used less for excretion of that substance. Milk is a clever and brilliant rehydration source with nutritional benefits. (Source: Lawrence Armstrong, University of Connecticut hydration expert).

Several milk alternatives now exist where there were none before for those of us who are lactose intolerant and those are just as good for hydration purposes.

10-PICKLE JUICE

– Sounds yucky, but honestly, it’s great to sip after you have just sweated a lot, or finished a long exercise program, because it helps you recover your body’s electrolyte levels faster. But that’s not the only thing it’s good for.

7 reasons to drink pickle juice:

  1. Soothe muscle cramps.
  2. Source liquid for hydration – Renews electrolytes faster with natural sodium and potassium.
  3. No fat, but calories can add up from 1 to 100 with various pickling solutions-Make your own!
  4. Pickle juice is affordable. Read labels when buying pickle juice sports drinks-Not every one of them is a ‘healthy’ alternative.
  5. Significant amounts of vitamin C and E to help reduce free radicals floating around inside your body.
  6. Some studies say that just 1/2, or one ounce of vinegar aids in weight loss. Pickle juice has significant vinegar amounts.
  7. Pickle juice vinegar helps regulate blood sugar levels after the meal in people with type 2 diabetes (Source: https://www.hindawi.com/journals/jdr/2015/175204/)

Pickle juice is a:

  • Healthy substitute for sugary sport drinks
  • Way to improve your gut health by promoting flora and good bacteria balance in your tummy.
  • Fast bad breath sweetener!
    (Source: healthline.com)

11-SMOOTHIES

– Personal favorite! Not only do smoothies fill you up, act as a food suppressant for binge eating disasters and food craving deterrents, they are super healthy hydrating tools! For hydrating quenchers high in antioxidants and a great source of fiber, try these smoothie combos! Various choices give you optimum value in vitamins and minerals!

Try these 7 killer combinations:

  1. Blueberries/strawberries/spinach leaves/banana/yogurt
  2. Blueberries/banana/almond butter/almond milk
  3. Strawberry/banana/coconut milk/Tahitian Vanilla/Raw honey
  4. Your favorite berries/peanut butter/soy milk
  5. Banana/Peanut Butter/hemp seeds/dates/soy milk/cinnamon
  6. Tangerines/banana/honey
  7. Pineapple/banana/parsley leaves/avocado/grated ginger

* According to modernfarmer.com (Read More Here:  6 Secretly Poisonous Plants We Eat All The Time )If you use apples, cherries, or apricots in your smoothie or when you are juicing, please remove seeds first:
” . . . seeds of all of these fruits are not considered edible; they’re hard, bitter, and unpleasant. This bitter flavor is a protective element: The plant puts it there to discourage animals like us from destroying them. It comes from a substance called amygdalin, which turns into cyanide when it comes into contact with acids in the human digestive system. Cherries, apricots, peaches, and nectarines have the substance in higher concentrations than apples, but all of the seeds and pits in these fruits are built tough. What if you swallowed some? Your body will simply pass them out. Just don’t pulverize and then consume cherry pits.”

12 – SOUP & BROTH

– NATURAL HOME MADE SOUPS – Favorite weekend meal in many homes – Anything healthy left in the fridge that can be mixed into a broth, heated or put in a slow cooker and served in a bowl. In our house that means meat protein leftovers, vegetable leftovers and salad leftovers, with a fruit salad on the side of . . . . leftovers. We have no waste this way and anything “left over” can be frozen for lunches!

We can’t advocate for any one soup or broth in particular, because at one point or another, we have used everything you can imagine to make these broths and soups. Fortunately none of our “delicious experiments” have ended up anywhere except on our table. Simply search for your favorite all natural soup recipes in any search engine. After awhile you won’t need any recipe, you’ll just know how to make a great soup and broth!

For super hydrating yumminess, head over to diynatural.com for some great ways to get started with simple, easy and healthy recipes. Try making your own bone broth!

13-STRAWBERRIES

– Also known to contain potassium – the mineral that helps your nerves contract and your muscles tighten (Source – medlineplus.gov) – Whether in a drink, blended, or added as garnish or on a skewer between a chunk of banana – Kids love this! It’s fun, visually pleasing, and delicious! Strawberries are 8% Dietary fiber, 4% Potassium, 1% Protein and Calcium, 97% Vitamin C, 3% Magnesium, and 2% Iron per serving.

Try this yummy Gluten Free Strawberry Almond Shortcake recipe from SimpleHealthyKitchen.com:

Prep time: 10 mins/Cook time: 12 mins/Total time: 22 mins/Serves 6

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups ( 1 qt) strawberries, sliced
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2⅓ cups Bisquick Gluten Free mix
  • ⅓ cup butter
  • ¾ cup Vanilla flavor Almond milk
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • ¾ cup whipping cream, whipped
  • 12 whole almonds, crushed

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 425 F
  • Mix cut strawberries with ¼ cup of sugar and set aside.
  • Combine Bisquick mix and the remaining ¼ cup sugar, cut in butter with a fork.
  • Add the Almond milk and eggs and stir until all ingredients are mixed in.
    (don’t worry if the butter is not completely mixed- the little pockets of butter in the shortcakes taste fantastic!)
  • Grease a cookie sheet and drop 6 spoonfuls of mix onto the pan (each will be approx. the size of a small apple)
  • Bake 10-12 min. or until the tops of shortcakes are turning golden brown
  • Let the shortcakes cool for approx. 5 min. and then slice in half with a serrated knife; layer strawberries and top with whipped cream and chopped Almonds

14-TOMATOES

– Grape and cherry variety tomatoes are loaded with water and make great snacks and treats! Mix up a little tomato, onion and a few sprigs of basil for a quick and refreshing salad. We love the versatility and variety of all varieties of tomatoes!
Use caution when preparing tomatoes for digestion. Tomato leaves, roots, and stem (and, in limited doses, even some unripe fruit) are rich in tomatine, an alkaloid that’s mildly toxic to humans. It won’t kill you, unless you chow down pounds and pounds of it, but it is likely to cause you some gastrointestinal distress. (Source: Modernfarmer.com)

15-WATERMELON

– Eat as it is or blend into a smoothie, add to your water (much better than ‘flavored’ water-And, no need to read the ‘ingredients label’), use as a chunk to garnish plates with, blend in your drinks to help reduce the drying from alcoholic beverages, . . .

16-YOGURT

– Amazing in its food source flexibility! to keep your yogurt from becoming bad food use this 8-step guide to choose healthy yogurt:

  1. Simple is best – Plain. Since you only need the basic ingredients of yogurt to reap the rewards, stay away from anything added in the ingredients list (for example hydrogenated oils and artificial sweeteners).
  2. Add healthy ingredients yourself for added flavor (blueberries, strawberries, apples, etc.).
  3. Look for yogurt with Live and active cultures to avoid the heat treated methods that destroy the culture and therefore the nutrients of this tasty food!
  4. Identify the best percentage of calcium in yogurt (ideally 15-35%).
  5. Stay away – RUN – from ingredients that list “Sugar” first in any product, but especially in yogurt!
  6. Be active with your food participation and avoid ‘added fruit’ listed in the ingredients – If these are right up there on the ingredient list they are probably sugar, vegetable juice and/or food coloring. Add your own healthy fruit instead!
  7. 1-2% fat in yogurt is fine – If you like it sweeter dab on a teaspoon of honey for a sweeter taste.
  8. Read the label-Heat treated products are required to list that processing fact – Avoid those.
    (Source: health.com)

17 – ZUCCHINI

– Made up of 95% water and almost zero calories. Courgette is the common name for zucchini. Zucchini has nearly no fat (less than 1/2% of 1 %), and works as a moderate source of dietary fiber. Its other healthy elements include calcium, potassium, sodium and phosphorus, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, folate, magnesium, copper and manganese. Carotenoids, Ellagic acid, Flavonoids, Resveratrol, Glucosinulates, and Phytoestrogens, which are valuable phytonutrients, are also found in Zucchini.

Health benefits from zucchini are linked to weight loss (80% of weight loss is diet – It sure is!), cardiovascular health, skin health, men’s health, anti-inflammatory diseases, and hair growth (Saved the best for last)

Best use for zucchini to use it fresh and raw in salads because cooking zucchini will contribute to its loss of water and diminish beneficial hydrating effects. Steamed zucchini is better than cooked, but raw is best.

Organic fruits and vegetables are the best choice for all of us.

Hydrating Summer Fresh Salad – All The Good Stuff!

Serves 4-6 / Prep Time: 10 minutes / Total Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients:
• One small container of organic
mixed greens, washed
• 1 small zucchini, spiralized – fancy word for “turning vegetables into noodles by using a “spiralizer.”
• ½ large cucumber, diced
• 3-4 large watermelon radish, thinly sliced
• 1 C organic fresh raspberries
• 1-2 Cs watermelon, cubed
• ¼ C each, chopped fresh basil and chives
• 2 T raw pumpkin seeds
• 2 T hemp seeds

Dressing:
• ¼ C extra virgin olive oil
• 2 T apple cider vinegar
• 1 T Dijon Mustard
• 1 T raw honey
• Fresh ground pepper and sea salt as desired for taste

Directions:

  • In a large serving bowl, arrange mixed greens.
  • Layer zucchini spirals over greens and top with a layer of cucumbers.
  • Toss in watermelon cubes and raspberries, then arrange watermelon radishes decoratively on top.
  • Sprinkle with pumpkin seeds and hemp seeds over top.
  • In a small jar, combine salad dressing ingredients. Put on the lid and shake to mix well.
  • Drizzle over salad and serve.
  • Top with sliced grilled chicken or salmon  (sources: Webmd.com, Wikihomenutrition.com, strongfitnessmag.com, inspiralized.com)

7 Salad Recipe Book And Online Resources And Suggestions:

  1. Twelve Months of Monastery Salads” by Brother Victor-Antoine d’Avila-Latourrette.
  2. Mark Bittman’s “How to Cook Everything” or,
  3. Mark Bittman, “How to Cook Everything Vegetarian.”
  4. Super Natural Every Day” by Heidi Swanson.
  5. Patricia Wells,  “Salad as a Meal.”
  6. Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone,” by Deborah Madison.
  7. Ottolenghi’s Plenty,” by Yotam Ottolenghi.
    Sources:  Finecooking Recipes /Food52 Recipes /Martha Rose Schulman Cookbooks