Superfoods are the hottest fad in the nutritional world. Dark leafy greens, berries, and legumes are all examples of these nutrient-rich disease-preventers.
But when you have a thirst that needs quenching, you’re stuck. They say that water is the healthiest beverage for your mind and body.
Yet, you crave some flavor pizazz and extra physical and mental perks while refueling and rehydrating.
Step aside, superfoods!
Here are the seven best new drinks to try for mind and body benefits.
Enhanced water is exactly what it sounds like:
Plain water with a little extra oomph, usually in the form of infused electrolytes, vitamins and minerals, or pH.
Here’s why you might want to swap out that Aquafina or Dasani for enhanced water instead:
Chock full of potassium, sodium, and other electrolytes, these beverages aid in blood pressure regulation and muscle contractions.
These high pH drinks roll into alkaline territory. They’re credited with pulling acid from the blood while boosting energy and healthy digestion.
Loaded with calcium and phosphorus (trace minerals), this water can reinforce bones and lower blood pressure.
Before you toss that “enhanced water” into your shopping cart and hope it works miracles, scout out the nutrition label. It seems like everything falls into this category nowadays — even water with artificial flavoring and heaps of sugar.
The “beet diet” may not sound so appetizing, but this weight loss fad might not be entirely off-base. That’s because beets are among the most nutritious vegetables in the world and even earned a spot on the coveted “superfood” podium.
When roasted, blended, and pulsed, this root vegetable’s benefits enter a liquid form for a tasty, clean treat.
Rest assured, your mind and body will thank you for its:
- Cancer-preventing antioxidants
- Improving of cognitive function by directing more oxygen to the brain
- Lowering of triglyceride and cholesterol levels
- Boost to exercise performance
- Lowering of blood pressure and increasing of blood flow (thanks to its nitrate content)
The best part is that a single cup of beet juice has just 100 calories! You can now treat your system to folate, potassium, iron, and vitamin C without gaining weight (the other extreme).
Apple Cider Vinegar Mixes
Don’t let the name fool you! Despite its nose-scrunching odor (think potent vinegar with a hint of the orchards), apple cider vinegar isn’t going away any time soon. This sour and bacteria-laden mix is a blessing in smelly disguise.
That’s because it can better control blood sugar and insulin in struggling diabetics. ACV could also prevent cell damage caused by cancer (polyphenols in action).
There’s also evidence that it could aid with weight loss with as little as one tablespoon a day. And if a clogged gut is a daily hassle, apple cider vinegar is notorious for helping a stalling digestive tract chug along.
Warning: Unless your taste buds are numb, do not drink apple cider vinegar straight. Mix a tablespoon or two into a limeade drink with most parts water.
Green tea isn’t “new” by most standards (its first steeped cup dates as far back as 2737 BC). But thanks to its widely-popularized catechin antioxidants, this hot or cold tea is nearing superfood status.
In the cranium, this bittersweet tea offers impressive cognitive benefits. With brain cell protection at the forefront, daily green tea can improve working memory and potentially delay a disheartening Alzheimer’s diagnosis.
(And if you’re still half-asleep during your 8 a.m. lecture, the 20mg of caffeine will give you a slight jolt without the buzz or crash.)
But green tea’s unique bioactive compounds collection triggers benefits from head to toe. It can reduce inflammation, ignite your metabolism (hello, fat burning), and keep heart disease at bay (a 31% lower risk!).
They say, “If you can’t pronounce the ingredients on the label, it’s probably not good for you!” Whoever coined that phrase certainly didn’t think about açaí berries (for reference, it’s “ah-sigh-EE”).
These tiny purple berries, native to South America, pack quite the health punch. Blend it into a majestic purple smoothie, and feel confident you’re protecting your cells.
Açaí juice can slash your heart attack risk by ⅓, lower LDL cholesterol, and prevent cancer (antioxidants). The refreshing detox effects are undeniable after chugging this blackberry-flavored beverage. (Note: the jury is still out on some health benefits.)
If you’re like 65% of Americans, coffee is a staple in your diet, whether it digs you out of your mid-afternoon slump or jolts you awake on the ride to work. But filtered coffee — often dubbed “pour over and drip” — is the real miracle worker.
A 20-year study analyzed this paper-filtered beverage, and the results were startling. As it turns out, it’s better to drink filtered coffee than skip the java altogether.
The seemingly endless benefits list features a 15% lower risk of death. Other honorable mentions include lower stroke, heart disease, and heart attack risks.
Beware: Piling sugar, cream, or milk into your mug of filtered coffee will slowly phase out these perks. Take it easy on the extras!
It’s time to add “kombucha” to your vocabulary! This fizzy, fermented tea beverage is a hotbed for yeast, bacteria, and sugar (in the best way possible).
Though slightly alcoholic due to its 30-day SCOBY fermentation, this tangy and zingy drink is:
- Loaded with antioxidants that prevent free radical production
- High in probiotics for healthy digestion and gut bacteria balance
- Credited with diabetes and heart disease management
- Known for its brain-boosting effects (escape the fog!)
Don’t worry about finding a SCOBY and playing scientist on your kombucha journey. You can find this fancy tea in the grocery store beverage aisle!
Kombucha, açaí juice, and enhanced water can do wonders for your otherwise bored taste buds and struggling nutrition. But none of these mind and body beverages should entirely replace good old H2O.
Whether you’re lugging around a gallon jug or refilling your YETI Rambler at the water fountain every couple of hours, you should still be drinking …
- For men: 3.7 liters (or 15.5 cups) a day
- For women: 2.7 liters (or 11.5 cups) a day
Fruits and vegetables also boast high water contents. So if your hourly bathroom trips are more annoying than prideful, take it easy on the water, and enjoy a salad or fruit cup at lunch!
Adam Marshall is a freelance writer who specializes in all things apartment organization, real estate, and college advice. He currently works with Arch at Bloomington to help them with their online marketing.