Beat The Heat With Hydrating Summer Foods (and Recipes!)

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     Sunshine is abundant these days, and temperatures are certainly on the rise. Summer is upon us, and dehydration is common! Here in Puerto Rico, an island blessed with beautiful coconut palms, we’re cracking open coconuts daily for the super-hydrating, electrolyte-rich water.

     Getting your fluids is, of course, very important, and we should all be drinking plenty of pure water daily. Coconut water is fantastic, too. Try adding a sprinkle of Himalayan sea salt to your water bottle. Thanks to its 84 natural minerals, sea salt enhances your body’s ability to absorb and hold H2O.

     And don’t underestimate the power of your food! Fresh fruits and vegetables supply a wonderful boost of hydration, so stock up on more of these lovely summer foods today.

Cucumber

     Cucumbers, being 96% water, are one of the most hydrating foods you can consume. In addition, they balance your pH, support digestive health, and fight inflammation. Pull out and absorb more of their beneficial minerals by adding them to water.

Cucumber Detox Water

Fresh, filtered water
Cucumber slices
Pinch of pink Himalayan sea salt
Fresh lime or lemon juice

Combine all ingredients together, and chill in fridge. Replace cucumber after two refills.

Avocado Cucumber Bites

Looking to squeeze in a bit more green? Your afternoon snack is a great time to do so.
1 large cucumber
Avocado, diced
Sea salt
Coconut aminos, Bragg’s liquid aminos, tamari, or soy sauce
Lemon juice (optional)

Slice the cucumber, top with avocado chunks, season with sea salt and your choice of sauce. Takes two minutes!

Watermelon

     It’s the little things in life, like enjoying a juicy watermelon in the sunshine. Lucky for us, summer is a great time to stock up on the beauties!

     Red foods, like watermelon, are generally high in the antioxidant lycopene and support the blood and heart. More fun facts about this delicious summer food…

  • Fights cancer-causing free radicals
  • Boasts a high water content
  • May reduce high blood pressure and increase circulation
  • Every part is nutritious… flesh, rind, and seeds
  • Keeps your skin and hair healthy
  • Loaded with vitamin C, vitamin A, beta-carotene, zinc, potassium, and magnesium
  • Alkalizes your body, balancing high acidity levels

As a kid, I ate watermelon with a touch of sea salt, and still do to this day. Anyone else?

Zucchini

     Zucchini, a summer squash, is a great source of magnesium, vitamin C, folate, potassium, fiber and hydration (again, high water content). Try this light, refreshing salad.

ZucchiniSalad

2 zucchini
Olive oil
Fresh lemon juice
1-2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
Sea salt and pepper, to taste

Thinly slice or spiralize* zucchini into strips. Dress with olive oil, lemon, sea salt and pepper (to taste). Stir in parsley, and serve.

Not a fan of parsley? Substitute fresh mint.

Don’t have a spiralizer or spiral slicer? Simply use a vegetable peeler to create thin slices of zucchini, and then cut into strips.

Tomatoes

The ultimate summer food, tomatoes have vital antioxidants and phytochemicals known to fight cancer cell formation. They are a nutrient-dense super food primed to help prevent disease.

Don’t miss out on the many health benefits of tomatoes…

  • Antioxidant load includes alpha lipoic acid, beta-carotene, lutein, and vitamin C
  • Great source of choline, a nutrient that helps you sleep, maintain cell membranes and reduce inflammation
  • Cancer prevention, especially prostate, lung, and stomach
  • Heart health support
  • High water content helps keep you hydrated and your bowels moving

Multiply the goodness of these red beauties by following these simple tips:

  • Cook tomatoes to release more lycopene for your body to soak up
  • Combine them with a fat, like extra virgin olive oil or avocado, to enhance nutrient absorption
  • Eat tomatoes with spinach to maximize iron uptake in the green leafies

Simple Bruschetta

Need an appetizer for that summer BBQ?

Bruschetta

Organic ripe tomatoes, diced

Fresh basil, finely chopped

Garlic cloves, minced

Extra virgin olive oil

Sea salt

Freshly ground pepper

Dice, mix, taste, and enjoy! Simplicity at its finest. Serve with organic corn chips, gluten-free crackers or your favorite Italian bread.

Leslie is the creator of Mindful Dine, a community dedicated to inspiring nutritious eating and healthy living. She is a self-taught cook, writer, marine scientist, ocean lover and wellness advocate. Leslie is passionate about wholesome, healing food and enjoys inspiring others to be active participants in their health. A native Texan, she now lives in Puerto Rico with her husband.
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