5 Refreshing Spring / Summer Drinks!

By Joanna 06/06/2014 In

Are you feeling the Summer Heat? Well I am! Instead of blasting the air conditioner this summer, which is something we do a lot in the tropical countries, let’s try to cool your body from the inside out with these 5 refreshing summer drinks.

You only need 9 basic ingredients to make all of them and these ingredients have been used by various cultures traditionally to cool down in hot climates.

Let’s start with my top refreshing drink, which I grew up drinking so very often:

1) Coconut Water

You know, I had extreme difficulties trying to source fresh coconuts here in the UK and what I managed to buy are old coconuts. If you can, source for fresh young green coconuts for maximum benefits and taste. Of course, it’s not so easy for most of us to find fresh coconuts, so if you struggle to find them, you can buy 100% pure coconut water in cans or boxes from supermarkets or healthy stores.

Coconut water is rich in electrolytes and potassium, which is excellent to replenish lost fluid from our body either through being exposed to the summer heat or through exercising. This also helps to moisturize our skin from within.

Coconut water is also known to reduce blood pressure and stress. My mum has a lawyer friend who would frequently start his day with a large fresh coconut water to keep him calm especially when he knows he has a challenging day ahead!

And unlike coconut milk, which is high in saturated fat and calories, coconut water is low in fat and calories. 1 cup has between 45 – 60 calories. I like to drink it chilled on it’s own, or you can add a squeeze of lemon to kickstart your day.

2) Cold Green Tea

1 tbsp Green Tea Leaves
2-3 Cups (500-750ml) Water
*Optional: Add juice from one Lemon or sweeten with 1 tbsp. of raw honey

Instead of the traditional way to brew hot green tea, you can make cold green tea overnight and bring it with you to work or school. Add 1 tbsp. of green tea leaves into a water bottle. Then add between 500 – 750ml of water at room temperature. Store this overnight in the fridge, and the next morning, the tea leaves will open up and you’ll have a bottle of fresh and cooling green tea.

I’ve filmed an entire video just on the health benefits of Green Tea, which you can watch on this link below.

It is common to urinate more frequently when you consume green tea due to its diuretic properties. This helps the body to clear heat, release toxins and promotes the production of body fluids. Drinking green tea on a regular basis will also stimulate mental clarity and calms the emotion.

So Keep Calm and Drink Green Tea!

3) Cucumber Mint Cooler

This drink is also known as detox water. If you do not like plain water because it’s boring and tasteless, then make this. Here are the ingredients:

Ingredients (Makes 4 Cups)
1L Water
6-8 thin Cucumber Slices
½ Lemon, thinly sliced
8-10 fresh mint leaves, coarsely chopped

1) Add cucumber, lemon and mint leaves either in a pitcher or teapot.
2) Cover with water and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight, if you want the flavor to be stronger.
3) Pour in a large glass over some ice and serve! You can choose to use whole mint leaves but I’ve chosen to chop them up as this helps to release the flavor quicker.

Cucumbers are 96% water, hence perfect in keeping you hydrated. Cucumbers also relieve heat in the body such as burning of the stomach, sore throat, acne and inflammatory skin conditions.

Mint helps to calm the stomach, especially for women on their period or those who suffers from Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). It also creates a cooling sensation in the throat and mouth.

Lemon on the other hand, can stabilize the pH levels and blood sugar in our body.

4) Barley Water

If you live in a tropical country, you can pretty much get Barley Water along the roadside. Most of the times, they are served with sugar, however you can always ask for plain barley water without added sugar, or make your own!

Here are the ingredients:

Ingredients (Serves 4)
- ¼ Cup (50g) of Pearl Barley, washed and rinsed – 210Cals
- 1 Litre of Water
- 1 tbsp Honey – 64Cals
*Option: Add juice from one lemon or a handful of torn mint leaves

Per Cup – 68.5Cals

1) Bring barley and water to a boil. Once the barley comes to a boil, then decrease the heat to low and simmer for 45 to 60 minutes.
2) Then remove from heat and stir in the honey. You may add more honey to sweeten it.
3) Serve either warm or refrigerate until chilled. This can last for 2-3 days.

Some of you might prefer to strain the barley water and discard the barley. I however, like to drink it with the barley itself. This 1 cup has about 68.5Cals.

It is commonly known that sick people are generally advised to drink barley water as it provides instant energy, is easy to digest and reduces the body heat. You don’t have to be sick to drink it, have a glass of barley water along side your meal and still gain all the health benefits.

If however you are gluten intolerant, then you should avoid drinking barley water as it contains gluten.

5) Honey Lime Juice

Most of us drink lemon juice, I however prefer lime juice.

- 1 Cup (250ml) Water, luke warm
- 1 Lime Juice – 10Cals
- 1 tsp Honey – 22Cals

So, combine 1 cup of luke warm water, juice from 1 lime and 1 teaspoon of honey in a glass. Serve immediately, chilled it in the fridge or add ice cubes.

Besides the fact that lime juice keeps you cool, it also keeps your skin nourished and hydrated from the inside out. If consumed on a regular basis, it can aid in reducing issues like wrinkles, dry skin, blemishes, rashes and more, which result in glowing skin.

So beat the heat this summer with natural and traditional ingredients, which will benefit your health long term.

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