What is it with the health industry? Through our lifetime we are overwhelmed by a tsunami of conflicting advice and research telling us what we should eat one day and then giving it the ‘red card’ the next. It makes my goal of attaining the body of Giselle Bundchen and the physical prowess of Tom Brady as confusing as the offside rule! Wheat, gluten, fat, salt, sugar, red meat and alcohol are all supposedly out of the question, and now even fruit and veg may no longer be A-ok, with their skins acting as the perfect sanctuary for nasty pesticide residues – holy guacamole, what is a girl to eat?!!! If I were to stick to the rules, I would currently be surviving on a diet of air and water!
In fact, water is something I do drink – A LOT. Getting in eight glasses a day is not a problem for me. However, drinking plain ole water can be rather dull and boring, so I like to perk mine up with a slice of lemon, and if I am feeling especially extravagant, some fresh mint and cucumber. So imagine my surprise when I popped into my local health food store to be met by an entire wall of bottled water infused with all kinds of fruity concoctions. Have I actually been one step ahead of the health train for once?
Infused water has many benefits. Apart from tasting great and looking pretty, it flushes toxins from your system, keeps you hydrated, clears your skin of spots and pimples, and contains far less calories and sugar than soda or fruit juice. It is also a healthy alternative for children who refuse to give up on flavoured drinks. Winner winner free-range organic chicken dinner!
But why spend fortunes on bottled infused water, when it takes just seconds to prepare at home? All you have to do is clean and prep the fruits and herbs, pop them into a pitcher of water, and leave them to work their infusion magic!
There are no holds barred when it comes to your infusion. Strawberry, Lemon and Basil, Watermelon and Mint, and Blueberry and Lavender are some of my faves – the world’s your oyster!
You can also freeze pieces of fruit and herbs inside ice cubes to serve with your infused water. They look great, add to the taste of the water as they melt and are also a great way to preserve fresh fruit and herbs. I like to use the Tovolo Ice Cube Moulds as they are made with flexible silicone, so it’s easy to pop out the cubes when they are ready, and they also come in a range of fun novelty shapes. I used the Tovolo Heart Ice Mould for my ice cubes.
This recipe for lemon, mint and cucumber infused water is great for those on a detox as the lemon will naturally cleanse and detox the body, whilst aiding digestion and boosting the immune system, the mint adds a touch of sweetness, while the cucumber rehydrates and is also said to have anti-inflammatory properties. So drink up and enjoy!
UK followers can now purchase some of the products featured in this article from the newly launched Arugula & Rocket Cookshop!
Lemon, Cucumber & Mint Infused Water
12 Cups of Water (3 Quarts)
2 Lemons (you can also use Limes, or a mixture of)
2-3 Sprigs of Mint
Be sure to wash the lemons, cucumber and mint before use.
Slice the lemons and cucumber.
Add the lemons, cucumber, and mint to the pitcher of water.
Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours, or overnight (the longer you leave the water to infuse the stronger the flavour will be).
Freeze pieces of lemon and sprigs of mint inside ice cubes to serve with your water.