Wednesday, May 7, 2014

What to drink and what not to drink by Dr. Weil

4 Healthy Beverages
Published: 5/7/2014
 
 
  1. Green tea. Dr. Weil's beverage of choice, green tea is a potent source of catechins - healthy antioxidants that can inhibit cancer cell activity and help boost immunity. Look for an organic and fair trade version ideally and try to replace your morning coffee with a cup of tea for a healthier wake-up.
  2. Cranberry juice. Cranberries are a rich source of vitamin C and contain a substance that hinders the attachment of bacteria to bladder walls, which can help prevent urinary tract infections. Instead of cranberry juice cocktail, opt for unsweetened cranberry juice concentrate and dilute with water or sparkling water. Diluted blueberry juice is a healthy choice as well.
  3. Red wine. The antioxidant activity of red wine has been linked to heart health benefits, reduced stress, and even preserving memory. If you enjoy an occasional drink, limit your intake to one to two glasses a day. If you don't drink, don't start - there are other ways to get antioxidants in your diet, including fresh whole fruits and vegetables.
  4. Pure, filtered water. Staying well hydrated is essential to optimal health and overall functioning. Sip water throughout the day, and in the warmer months, be sure to drink water before and after exercising to avoid dehydration.
4 Unhealthy Beverages
Published: 5/6/2014
Whether you are watching your weight or just want to eat healthier, taking a look at what you drink is key. Empty calories can lurk in all types of beverages - especially these:
  1. Coffee drinks with extras such as sugar or flavored syrup. These deliver a concentrated dose of quick-digesting carbohydrates that can lead to weight gain. A better option is a plain coffee with a little half-and-half, or, better yet, enjoy antioxidant-rich green tea instead of coffee.
  2. Frothy summer cocktails. Whether it's a margarita or a piña colada, sugary drinks pack a double dose of calories due to alcohol and sugar - some can top 800 calories in one drink! A better option is a glass of red wine (60-100 calories) or a light beer (about 100 calories).
  3. Non-juice "juice drinks." Before buying bottled juice, read the label and make sure it is 100% juice (not just "made with" real juice) and check for added sweeteners and calories. Many of these products are no better than drinking sugared water. The best juices are fresh, not bottled, and made partially or wholly from vegetables rather than fruits. If you consume fruit juice, I recommend adding purified or sparkling water to reduce the sugar content. 
  4. Soda. There just isn't anything nutritious about soda, whether it's diet or regular. If you're a soda addict, breaking the habit is among the best moves you can make for your weight and your health. Consider switching to sparkling water with a slice of citrus.

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