How this 80-year-old entrepreneur is changing the hydration game

New, research backed ways to drink to your health

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Getty Images

 In the past three years I’ve been on a quest to experiment with myself, and any of my family and friends who would allow me to teach them my method of hydration. I wanted to find out if homemade cold-brew herbal tea would change how we consumed water. I also wanted to know if there are noticeable benefits from drinking cold-brew tea compared to plain water.

I set out to do some in-depth research testing. Some of my testers never liked tea until trying cold-brew. All of them, including myself, found we were drinking more of this tea infused water compared to plain water. One reason was it was so tasty, making it desirable to drink.  I even heard the word “addictive” used. All of us were thrilled that being hydrated made us feel remarkably better. We experienced more energy, smoother skin and some lost bloat and unwanted weight.

Every cell, organ and tissue in our body needs water to function properly and to flush out toxins. The United States Department Of Agriculture (USDA), claims dehydration affects our mood and motor skills. The Mayo Clinic says we need to drink at least eight  8-ounce glasses of water daily, but this is only a guideline. Intake varies among individuals. 

Each persons body is different. Take into account age, sex, lifestyle, body weight, weather, activity level and medical condition and you start to realize you may not be consuming enough liquids. . Some doctors calculate how much liquid we should drink by body weight, however—to get a little personal—I find my urine is the best barometer. If it’s clear, I’m drinking enough liquids, if its colored or darker yellow, then I might not be hydrating properly.  Always check with your health care professional if you are pregnant or on medication. 

Don’t count sports drinks and sugary drinks in this hydration equation. Most commercial drinks you buy including cold-brew tea may contain sodium, sugar, chemicals or other additives.

Here’s a few signs of what dehydration may cause: headaches, bad breathe, mental confusion, fatigue, constipation, kidney stones and muscle cramps. When you feel thirsty it’s a sign you are already dehydrated. 

While water is considered one of the best ways to hydrate, not everyone finds it easy to consume. I’ve heard “it has no taste”, “it’s just not appealing”, “I have to force myself to drink it”. For this reason I added tea to my daily hydration regime. With homemade cold-brew herbal tea, we get the benefits of added minerals, antioxidants and nutrients to our water. We also gain a tastier drink. No sugar is needed, especially if you add some citrus or fruit to the tea.  

One way cold-brew herbal tea differs from ice tea is it can be easily made without boiling water. Another plus is slow overnight extraction produces a smooth tasting brew while still getting all the flavor and nutritional value without taxing the leaves with boiling water

Tea is used for more than just hydration. It can soothe anxiety, stress, heartburn, cramps, upset stomachs and so much more. In ancient civilizations and indigenous cultures, herbal remedies and teas are used for healing the sick. 

Herbal teas are non-caffeinated and come from a variety of plants, which include any leaf, root, flower, or fruit. They are called infusions.

Black, green, white, oolong and pu-erh are known as true teas and come from the same plant called Camellua Sinehnsis. True teas contain caffeine, and may heighten alertness. True teas also contain a unique antioxidant called flavonoids, the most potent is known as EGCG, epigalocatechin gallate—sorry for the big word—which helps fight free radicals that may contribute to cancer, clogged arteries and heart disease. Polyphenols are also found in tea and are a powerful micronutrient and antioxidant, known for helping common diseases like diabetes and cardiovascular issues.

Water is the most consumed liquid in the world. Tea is second. Join them together and you have a winning combination. Both hot and cold-brew tea, have their place in a healthy lifestyle. A hot cup of tea is soothing and a glass of cold-brew can be refreshing and lifts your spirits. 

 At the age of eighty, I know that diet, exercise and teas have kept my skin glowing and my body healthy and energetic. I take the time to hydrate daily because it truly makes a positive difference.

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