When it comes to hydrating our bodies, water is always a good choice. Water is the purest form of nourishment we can give ourselves and without enough, our bodies simply wouldn’t function. However, other beverages can be enjoyed in a balanced wellness plan, and many can even offer benefits that you won’t get elsewhere. Some, in fact, have shown to be especially healing and offer an array of nutrients to multiple parts of the body. Some are just easy-to-digest and nourishing, which can be helpful during a time your body isn’t feeling its best or when you’d like to give your stomach a break. Though not necessary to a healthy diet, these healing liquids are something to explore as you find your best version of a balance wellness plan:

1. Coconut Kefir

Healing Liquids to Add to Your Wellness PlanCara Faus/Flickr

We’ve shared why coconut kefir is a health elixer everyone should try at least once, and if you haven’t already, here’s another reminder to give it a whirl. Not too strong in taste, this healing fermented beverage provides more probiotics than any yogurt could dream of! Coconut kefir can be made at home and also bought at the store where the cold probiotics are sold (such as at Whole Foods). Coconut kefir has been found to combat harmful microbes, Candida yeast overgrowth, sugar cravings, and low immunity. A tablespoon a day can be consumed alone or in water, or you can add it to your daily smoothie.

2. Apple Cider Vinegar

Healing Liquids to Add to Your Wellness Plan

Don’t guzzle this down like water, but a tablespoon or two a day of this liquid might help even out your blood sugar, cleanse the blood and kidneys, and keep your digestive system rockin’ and rollin‘! Raw, organic apple cider vinegar contains a beneficial culture referred to as ”the mother” which is a beneficial yeast that promotes alkalinity, a well-functioning immune system, and acts as a pre-biotic to feed good bacteria, promoting multitudes of beneficial probiotics in the gut. If you currently take a probiotic supplement, fermented foods and drinks like apple cider vinegar with amplify their benefits. Use apple cider vinegar (often referred to as ACV) a couple times a day, such as diluted with water and add a squeeze of lemon and even some stevia to mask the taste if needed. You can also add it to chilled herbal teas over ice or use it in salad dressing, but try not to take it plain by the tablespoon since its natural acidity may not be the most pleasant. Though acidic on the outside, apple cider vinegar is internally very alkalizing unlike most other types of vinegar.

3. Green Smoothies

Healing Liquids to Add to Your Wellness Plan

Green smoothies are a great way to get in more vegetables and leafy greens whether you just don’t like them or don’t have time to sit down and eat enough during the day. You can also add fruit to your smoothies, but focus on greens over fruit when possible. Green smoothies are also quick to digest so they put less work on your digestive system and help your body absorb the nutrients faster. You should still be sure to eat whole meals, however, a green smoothie a day is a smart choice in any wellness plan. For a low sugar version, try: 2 cups shredded kale, 1 cup water, 1/2 cup almond milk, 1 sliced cucumber, 1/4 avocado or pumpkin puree, 1/4 cup raspberries, a little liquid alcohol-free stevia, the juice from one lemon, 1 stalk celery, and 1 cup ice. Feel free to add other ingredients like superfoods, cinnamon, or vanilla, but focus on whole food ingredients when possible.

4. Green Juice

Healing Liquids to Add to Your Wellness PlanBreville USA/Flickr

Like green smoothies, green juices can also be an important part of a healthy wellness plan. We’re not talking about a juice detox here, but instead, just the addition of green juices to your day. Green juices such as those made with leafy greens, celery, cucumbers, a little carrot and lemon, ginger, and fennel, daikon radish, and green vegetables, are a great way to add more magnesium, chlorophyll, calcium, potassium, iron, and Vitamins A, C, and K to your diet in a quick format. If you don’t want to throw the pulp away, repurpose it to use in savory muffins for breakfast or in soups and stews. Having a green juice a few times a week will give your body a fresh shot of wellness that also aids in nourishing the body with nature’s purest vitamins and minerals. Here’s a great Green Detox Juice to give a try today and some tips for making sure it tastes great!

5. Hot Green Tea with Lemon

Healing LIquids to Add to Your Wellness Plan

Green tea is one of the most powerful healing beverages out there. Those interested in superfoods will enjoy the all powerful matcha green tea, and those interested in macrobiotics will enjoy kukicha twig tea, which is said to contain more calcium than cow’s milk and promote anti-cancer benefits. Or, if you’re simply looking for plain, average green tea that is still a great choice of antioxidants, there are plenty of beneficial types from organic brands on the market that are highly affordable. Green tea is rich in antioxidants that have been shown to fight cancer, diabetes, and even aid in weight loss and improve the mood. It’s also kinder to your body than coffee, and adding a squeeze of lemon will add more Vitamin C, though some do argue that it take away from the antioxidants in the tea. Either way, a cup of green tea a day is a great way to add a calming source of energy without the need for a second cup of coffee during the day.

What Whole Foods Wellness Looks Like….

It’s important to remember when approaching a wellness plan to avoid animal products however possible, excess coffee and harsh sources of caffeine, sugar, processed foods, and fill your kitchen up with whole foods like vegetables, leafy greens, fruits, whole grains, beans and legumes, nuts and seeds, and herbs and spices. Aside from the food, adding beneficial liquids to your diet can also help. Other popular beneficial beverage ideas are kombucha, sauerkraut juice, vegetable broth, miso soup, and hot cacao with maca. Try the five ideas above out if you get a chance; they’re less inflammatory to the body than energy drinks and coffee, and also provide additional wellness benefits. Do you drink any of these healing liquids?

Lead Image Source: Marco Arment/Flickr