Hydrating in the heat
Water has integral roles to play in a variety of vital body functions such as helping carry oxygen around the body, the removal of toxins and the maintenance of healthy blood pressure. But in the heat, water is our most important tool to help regulate our body’s temperature.
However, it is not just inside the body where your water intake counts, dehydration has many visible signs, particularly for your skin which, without enough water, can lose elasticity, look dull, dry and in turn affect the overall tone and complexion.
To top it all off, water is vital for our wellbeing and brain function; helping us to feel happier and more content. But it’s not just water itself that is the key to hydration, there are plenty of fruit and vegetables with high water content which can be a great option for keeping you hydrated. Below, are some recipes including watermelon that are perfect for hydrating on a hot day.
Watermelon Lemonade: (Serves 4)
- 1 small watermelon
- 125ml lemon / lime juice
- 50g caster sugar (optional)
- 1 Litre soda water / sparkling water
- Ice cubes / crushed ice
- Garnish: Mint leaves & Lime wheels
- Cut the watermelon in the cubes, remove the seeds and place the watermelon cubes in a blender.
- Add the sugar and lemon juice and blend until smooth, once finished blending, taste and add sugar and lemon juice to taste if needed.
- Pour the mixture in to a jug and top up with soda water, mix.
- Place crushed ice into your serving glasses, and pour the lemonade over the crushed ice. Garnish with a lime wheel and mint leaves.
- Enjoy in your garden J
Watermelon salad with Feta & Mint: (serves 4)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Pinch kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- Pinch of ground black pepper
- 1Kg / 2lbs seedless watermelon cut into half inch cubes
- 250g / 0.5lbs feta cheese cut into cubes
- Black olives, halved
- Rocket leaves
- Chopped mint leaves
- In a bowl, whisk the olive oil, salt, lemon juice and pepper to make vinaigrette. ( if you like spice, feel free to add chilli flakes or tabasco sauce)
- Add all the ingredients and toss it gently
- Sprinkle mint leaves on top just before serving.
- Enjoy with some crusty bread!
Top tips for finding the best watermelon, the four S’s to remember:
- The Shape:
- Whether you choose a round, oval, or elongated watermelon, make sure it has a symmetrical and uniform shape without bumps or cuts.
- The Spot:
- Turn around the watermelon and look for a yellow spot, which suggests it reached peak ripeness on the vine. Avoid those with a white spot, however those with webbing are the sweetest.
- The Sound:
- Try tapping a watermelon with your hand or fist. A ripe one delivers a deep sound, whereas an overripe one sounds hollow or flat.
- The Stem:
- A watermelon’s tail is a piece of stem that remains attached after harvesting. A dry stem usually indicates a ripe watermelon.
So it is important to make water an integral part of your daily routine, whichever way you choose you’ll see an immediate improvement in how you feel and function.