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Healthy Diet Plans >>  Drinks

Health Benefits of Drinks

Drinks, also quite commonly referred to as beverages, can be described as liquids that are prepared for, or are naturally suited for human consumption. Most of us tend to reach out for what we usually call a “drink of water”, to quench one of our most basic needs, i.e., thirst. However, it is also medically recommended that all people consume the adequate amount of water each day, to prevent major health problems like dehydration. Strange as this may sound, water is not regarded as a beverage, or as a drink, even though almost all beverages contain at least some amount of water.

One of the healthiest drinks is natural water and it has numerous health benefits that most people are unaware of.

The best part about water is that not only is it easily available but it is also calorie free unlike many drinks available these days. One of this natural drinks health benefits is that it helps in cleansing the entire body and flushes out harmful toxins from the system. One of the other benefits of water is that it can actually help in weight loss by suppressing a person’s appetite. Increasing the consumption of water can help reduce fat deposits in the body. Other benefits of healthy drinks like water are that it helps in maintaining muscle tone and can also prevent a number of skin problems like sagging and wrinkles. Other healthy drinks like green tea, coconut water, milk and fresh fruits juices also have numerous health benefits for the human body. Just like water, milk is also important for the human body. In the case of this drinks health benefits, not only is it good for overall energy and vitality but it is also a rich source of calcium which is essential for building and maintaining bone strength. Taking this into account, one of the biggest benefits of healthy drinks like milk is that it can help prevent health problems like osteoporosis, arthritis and even tooth problems. Similarly, natural drinks like green tea have been used for medicinal purposes for centuries. Lowered risk of cancer is one of the biggest benefits of healthy drinks like green tea. Fruit juices are also full of vital vitamins, minerals and other nutrients which are essential for the proper functioning of the human body. These however are most beneficial when consumed without added sugar or other sweeteners.

Healthy Drinks

Almost all drinks help in keeping the body hydrated; however the components of certain drinks cause a reduction in their hydrating abilities. Such drinks are not usually regarded as being healthy drinks. Of course, water is the best hydrator, which is why we should consume a minimum of eight glasses in a day. However, there are a few other healthy drinks, which can be consumed by those who find it difficult to drink the daily recommended amount of water a day. These healthy drinks include:
  • Herbal tea: The leaves of certain plants add a very pleasant flavor and aroma to the water that they are steeped in. Hence, for those people who do not like water, these herbal tea infusions could be a fairly satisfying, yet safe alternative. Moreover, most types of herbal tea contain antioxidants, as well as medicinal properties, which are supposed to be beneficial fort the body; there are no known side effects that have been associated with herbal tea infusion. Some of the most highly recommended herbal tea types include mint, linden, verbena and balm.
  • Vegetable juice: This drink is usually made out of blended vegetables. Most times, people combine a variety of vegetables like carrots, beetroot, pumpkin and perhaps even tomatoes, to make fresh vegetable juice. Several people also make juice with vegetables like spinach, kale, dandelion greens, cabbage and cucumbers to make green drinks.
  • Fruit juice: It is possible to consume fresh, homemade juice, which neither contains sugar, nor any other additives. Some of the different types of fruit juices that are regarded as being healthy and are consumed by people include tangerine juice, orange juice, apple juice, grapefruit juice, pineapple juice and lime juice.

Nutrition and Nutrients in Drinks

In the case of natural drinks nutrition is never compromised and such drinks can benefit the body much more as compared to commercially produced drinks. Apart from this, natural healthy drinks are also easy to prepare at home and can be made with natural ingredients of your choice. Fresh fruit and vegetable juices, protein shakes and smoothies are not only easy to prepare but also help in maintaining a strong lean body and further assist in weight loss as well. In these drinks nutrients of vital importance such as a variety of vitamins and minerals can be found in plenty and these nutrients not only help in the proper functioning of various body systems but also boost immunity and help protect the body against a number of diseases and disorders. Therefore it is very important to find out about healthy drinks nutritional facts so you can decide which drinks are beneficial or harmful for you. Sweetened and carbonated beverages are full of empty calories and very low in nutritional values as well and are therefore best avoided or kept to a minimum. On the other hand in the case of natural drinks nutrition benefits are plenty and benefit the overall health of an individual. Natural drinks like coconut water are low in calories, fats and sugars but very beneficial in boosting immunity, re-hydrating the body, boosting metabolism and improving blood circulation. In comparison for carbonated and artificially sweetened drinks nutritional value is almost zero and regular consumption of these drinks only adds to health problems.

Calories In Drinks

Empty calories in drinks like these can lead to unnecessary weight gain and also adversely affect overall health in the long run. Alcohol is another drink which is high in carbohydrates and even fat in some cases and has no positive health benefits. Cutting out such drinks from your diet can play an important role in ensuring good health in the long run. Even in the case of alcoholic drinks, calorie count tends to vary from drink to drink depending on the basic ingredients used to make that drink. A pint of beer would generally have around 100-200 calories while a cocktail drink would have at least 150 calories. In cream based drinks calorie value is generally the highest because of the different creams used in these drinks. A pina colada would be a classic example of a cream based drink with a calorie count of 300-600 calories mainly because of the heavy cream, coconut cream and ice creams used to prepare this drink. Therefore it would be wiser to avoid such high calorie drinks and instead choose lower calorie drinks like vodka or gin with colas or low calorie tonic water. Beverages like tea and coffee are safe to consume when they are not loaded with sugar or cream. In fact these 2 drinks when had in the right quantities can actually have a positive effect on a person’s health. Therefore it is important to choose drinks and beverages carefully keeping in mind your health in the long run.
Submitted on January 16, 2014