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Summer is finally here and that means with the hotter weather we gravitate toward cold sugary drinks, popsicles and ice cream. However, many of these foods contain high fructose corn syrup and other sugars, which can affect blood sugar levels and cause dehydration. Between the heat, outdoor activities and exercise, it is important to consume plenty of water and hydrating foods. Enjoying more fruits in the summertime is a great way to quench your thirst along with providing your body with vitamins and nutrients. Fruits like cantaloupe, honeydew, oranges and watermelon are great sources. Watermelon is 93 percent water.

I have tested these delicious recipes that I pull out during the warmer months to keep me hydrated while enjoying a healthy treat. Since it's super simple and all ages of your family will love, try my "Mint Melon Cooler" juice and "Cherry Banana Sorbet." They'll bring a smile to anyone's face.

Kitchen Tools needed:

Juicer: Breville, Omega, Jack Lalanne, Green Star, Champion

A juicer is a machine that extracts liquid nutrients from the fibers of fruit and vegetables. The fiber or "pulp" is left behind which you can discard, compost, or use to make crackers. You are left just the juice, for a nutrient packed cooling drink.

High speed blender: Vitamix or Blendec

A high speed blender will be able to pulverize ingredients at a higher speed, such as blending frozen fruit into a thick ice cream. High speed blenders can handle blender nuts to create a creamy "nut cheese" as well as various sauces, mousses, and soups.

Watermelon Cooler

Serves: 2

Buy it:

5 cups watermelon, chopped or cubed

1 cucumber

1 handful of mint

1/2 lime squeezed

Make It:

Cut watermelon into cubes to fit in the juicer. Juice all.

Cherry Banana Sorbet

Serves: 1-2

Buy it:

2 frozen bananas (broken into halves)

1/2 cup frozen sweet cherries (pitted)

1/4 cup almond or coconut milk

1 tablespoon maple syrup (optional)

Make It:

Put all ingredients into a high speed blender such as a Vitamix or Blendtec. Use the wand to blend all ingredients. The fruit mixture may move up the walls of the blender, so use the wand to push it down to thoroughly blend. Serve in little ice cream bowls with frozen cherries on top.

Additional topping ideas: Granola, shredded coconut, chocolate chips, fresh fruit.


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