Enjoy this post on Infused Water from Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Amber Parisie!
My daughter and I were getting ready to leave Gilroy Gardens today when I thought I’d see if she’d like a sweet treat for the road. Jumping on a rare proposition she said, “Yes, I’d love one”.
Sweet Treats for Children are Okay in Moderation
I say “rare” proposition because I rarely offer to buy her a sweet treat when we are out for two reasons: One, the portion size of many sweet treats are gigantic, and secondly the price. She excitedly chose cotton candy, which only came in one size-giant. I told her she could have half of the bag and save the other half for another day. By the time we got to the car she’d eaten about half of her piece for the day and to my pleasure said, “I’ve had enough. I’ll save the rest for another day too”. I had a very proud parent moment right then; the reason being I don’t offer her large sweet treats, sweet beverages or juice often. She eats a Halloween sized candy for a special treat sometimes and otherwise eats fresh fruits and drinks water, so to have something like a large piece of cotton candy is too sweet for her. Don’t get me wrong, she will eat candy at just about any chance she gets, but moderation with regard to sweet treats has been engrained in her, and too much is too sweet for her.
Alternatives for Sugar-sweetened Beverages
Instead of having juice sugar-sweetened beverages Rylee only drinks milk and water. We do make infused water often, which eliminates “water boredom” and is a fun activity for both of us. It’s also extremely refreshing during these hot summer months. You can use whatever types of fruits and herbs you like, and here are some recipes for the really yummy ones. These are great for kids to help assemble because many of the herbs can just be washed and torn, and for an older child fruits like watermelon and strawberries can easily be cut with a butter knife so they can develop cooking skills at the same time. The finished product will be refreshing, delicious, beautiful, and low in sugar.
Infused Water Recipes
Each of these infused water recipes will make about 2 quarts. For each recipe, place the ingredients in a 2-quart jar (preferably a glass one so you can see the beautiful colors), top the ingredients with about 5 cups of ice, stir, cover, and refrigerate for about 2 hours. If you’re in the mood for something bubbly, use club soda instead of water.
Strawberry Basil Infused Water
Tear 8 fresh basil leaves in order to release their flavor. Combine with 3 cups halved strawberries.
Peach Vanilla Infused Water
Crush two vanilla beans with a wooden spoon and stir them into 6 pitted sliced peaches.
Minty Watermelon Infused Water
Scrunch 8 large mint leaves and combine with 5 cups watermelon chunks.
Ginger Pear Infused Water
Stir together 10 thin slices of fresh ginger and 5 cored sliced pears.
Kiwi Strawberry Infused Water
Combine three thinly sliced kiwis, 3 cups halved strawberries and two thinly sliced lemons.
Citrus Celebration Infused Water
Combine two of each thinly sliced: lemons, limes, grapefruit, and oranges.
Cucumber Refresher Infused Water
Scrunch 6 large mint leaves and combine with 2 thinly sliced cucumbers and 4 thinly sliced limes.
Apples and Cinnamon Infused Water
Combine 4-5 cored and thinly sliced apples of your favorite variety with 5 whole cinnamon sticks.