According the the national weather service, the Willamette Valley can anticipate many more hot days with summer with temperatures well above 80 degrees. Staying hydrated is crucial in sweltering temperatures. Young children can beat the heat by making it a habit of taking a few sips of water every 20 minutes to avoid dehydration. If children wait until the end of an exhausting physical activity (playing at the park always works up a good sweat!) to signal thirst, chances are that the beginning stages of dehydration have already begun.
Children will model after their parents and if they see them sipping on a beverage. In addition, if they see their parents choosing healthy drink options, they will start to reap the benefits of hydration, too. So, instead of offering children sugary beverages like soda or quenching their thirst with synthetic electrolytes (e.g., Gatorade or Propel), try an easy recipe of fruit infused water. Fruit infused waters do not contain artificial flavors or colorings and do not sneak in any unnecessary processed sugars. Plus, fruit infused water gives that “little bit” of natural flavor without sabotaging the health benefits of water. If anything, the fruit is also providing small hints of additional vitamins and nutrients. Right now, Marion County is booming with many different fruits like marionberries, raspberries, strawberries, watermelon, etc. This is the season to jump in try some easy recipes for fruit infused waters. You will only need a few ready to grab items like a mason jar or pitcher, desired fruit, water, and your imagination.
- All Citrus Flavored Water — slice 1 orange, 1 lime, 1 lemon into rounds, then cut the rounds in half. Add to jar, press and twist with the handle of a wooden spoon. Press enough to release some of the juices, but don’t pulverize the fruit into pieces. Fill the jar with ice. Pour in water to the top. Stir it with the handle of a wooden spoon or a chopstick. Put a lid on it, put it in the fridge, and chill.
- Raspberry Lime Flavored Water — Quarter 2 limes; with your hands, squeeze the juice into the jar, then throw in the squeezed lime quarters. Add raspberries. Press and twist with the handle of a wooden spoon to release some of the juices (don’t pulverize the fruit). Fill the jar with ice, then add water to the top. Stir, cover, and refrigerate.
- Pineapple Mint Flavored Water — Add a sprig of mint to the jar. Muddle the mint with the handle of a wooden spoon–the goal is to bruise the leaves and release their flavor–don’t pulverize them into bits. Add pineapple pieces, press and twist with the wooden spoon to release juices. Add ice to the top and then water. Stir, cover, and refrigerate.
Do you have favorite fruit infused water recipe to share? Or an easy, fun way to help keep young children hydrated? We would love to hear from you so please send recipes and ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org
National Weather Service
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