Healthy Cool Treats for the Summer

You are minding your own business, suddenly, in the distances, you hear the sweet charms of an ice cream truck. Like a Pavlov’s dog you start to salivate. Now you’re frustrated! You want something cool, you want something refreshing but you don’t want the muffin-top look in your bathing suit. To prepare for this yearning, I searched for simple, healthy, refreshing treats and tried them on my family and neighbors. These were their favorites:

Homemade Popsicles

Avoid the high fructose corn syrup and brightly, colored, stained lips and tongue with a natural fruit popsicle. You can use any fruit combination with almond or coconut milk to add smoothness. Try this following recipe:

Mango, Orange, Green Apple, and Lime Popsicle:
Combine 1/2 pound of frozen mango chunks (no sugar added variety), one green apple, 1/2 cup of light coconut milk, fresh squeezed juice from one orange and one lime, 1 tablespoon of honey (or agave or sugar) puree in a blender until smooth. Pour into popsicle molds. Freeze bars for four hours or until firm.


Fruit and Herb Infused Water (Spa Water)
So many benefits to keeping hydrated with water such as combating fatigue, headaches, muscle cramps and pain. Water improves digestion, metabolism, thinking and alertness. It also plays a big role in aiding weight loss and maintenance.

But, the thought of plain water does not excite most of us. So making fruit infused water is a natural delicious alternative to high sugary drinks such as lemonade and soda. Water with antioxidants, vitamins and minerals from fresh fruit, mixes up a perfect refreshing beverage for the summer!

(Spas frequently serve this water to their clients to cleanse and refresh, hence spa water.)

How to Make Spa Water
You can use any fruit (except for bananas) and fresh herb combo. Use 2 quart mason jars or a pitcher. Wash fruit well before adding to the jar. For a strong flavors, gently press or crush fruit and herbs. Fill jars with ice cubes, add water to the top, cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours to let the fruit and herbs steep. Good for up to 3 days.

Infused Water Combos To Try
1). Watermelon Rosemary ( Sweet and aromatic. Biggest hit!)- 1 cup of watermelon cubes and a sprig of fresh rosemary.
2). Strawberry, Lime, Cucumber, Mint (Light and refreshing)- 8-10 strawberries cut in halves, half a cucumber sliced, one lime sliced and mint leaves.
3). Blackberry, Blueberry, Lemon, Sage (Rich savory berry flavor) – Handful of blackberries and blueberries, one lemon sliced and sage or mint leaves.
4). Orange, Lemon, Lime (Tangy and a little bitter)- One orange, lemon and lime sliced.

*Fruit and herb infused waters are not very sweet. You can add 1 teaspoon of honey, agave nectar or sugar to your cup. A little sugar is still much better than the 10 teaspoons of sugar in soda.


Frozen Banana Pops
Instead of cake-pops, how about banana-pops! These were gone in seconds.
Just slice a couple of bananas, melt dark chocolate in the microwave, dip banana slices in the chocolate and place on wax paper. You can top the slices with sprinkles, chopped almonds, walnuts, shredded coconut or chia seeds. Place a tooth pick in each banana slice. Refrigerate or freeze for one hour. Enjoy! Keep in fridge/freezer for storage.

On a hot summer afternoon try these easy refreshing healthier treats, instead of stalking the ice cream man. Have a great summer!

About adwettrick

I am a Family Nurse Practitioner that works in an OB/GYN practice at Community Hospital North in Indianapolis. I graduated with my undergraduate and master's degree at Indiana University-Purdue University in Indianapolis in 2005. I am married to my best friend, Don Wettrick, whom is one of the inspirations in my life along with my three beautiful children and of course my faith in God. I enjoy educating my patients on preventative health and how to balance their busy life and being healthy. Mind, body, spirit are all connected and if one is in trouble the others tend to suffer as well.
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