Right outside my front door is my little cedar bush. Unfortunately, it didn’t make it through the Heat dome that we just experienced in the Pacific Northwest. Three days we shattered record highs hitting triple digits, in some places in Vancouver and Portland registered as high as 116 degrees. While the weathermen assure us, this was an unprecedented event, it is sure to be a warmer summer all around. Hydration through water and electrolytes is key in keeping the body safe from dehydration. There are plenty of artificial sports drinks on the market for getting electrolytes in. We have all seen these sugary drinks with red, yellow, and other food dye colors at the local convenience or grocery stores. For those that want a more natural approach nature provides away.
What are electrolytes? Electrolytes are minerals that help maintain your body’s ability to function. They help with your nervous system, muscle movement, and recovery. Great reasons to make a natural homemade electrolyte tea!
To make a homemade electrolyte drink, you start with a liquid base.
Add a bit of salt. Sea salt especially pink-Himalayan salt is preferable. In addition to sodium and chloride, Himalayan pink salt contains small trace amounts of other electrolyte minerals, calcium, potassium, and magnesium.
Add raw honey or maple syrup for a natural sweetener to cover salt. If you like, you can also add a little powdered calcium and/or magnesium supplement, to kick up the levels of those minerals.
Chop up a small lemon or both lemon and lime.
- 2 cups of water
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons honey or maple syrup, to taste
- ¼ cup lemon or lime rind and all (Some people prefer to squeeze the juice out into the water)
- ½ teaspoon of powdered minerals (Optional) you can also use a cup of coconut water for minerals
There are two methods to bringing all of these ingredients together. One is using the Sun as a helper put all ingredients together in a mason jar and leave out for the sun to warm over the day, place in the refrigerator overnight, and use the next day. If your want to do a larger batch just double your ingredients to fit the jar size.
If it’s more of making it that morning for the day’s use approach, you can warm all of the ingredients in a pan, and once honey dissolves, take the pan off the burner let cool and ice. If using lemon or lime juice and coconut water instead of lemon slices you can add juice after the other ingredients have simmered and cooled. If you’re making a larger batch just double your ingredients.
Another electrolyte tea uses Douglas fir tips (Pseudotsuga menziesii) and Western Hemlock tree tips (Tsuga heterophylla). Gather tree tips responsibly, (Always ask trees, be mindful not to overtake, and collect from many sources as to not stress trees out) Both have vitamin C, A, and trace minerals.
Clean tree tips in water then put tree tips into jars. Add a pinch of salt and set in the sun to let the light do its work.
For a faster approach, you can add water and tree tips to the saucepan and bring to simmer, let simmer for a few minutes after adding honey or maple syrup and a pinch of salt, then let cool and add ice cubes for a real cold refresher.
- Western Hemlock Tree tips are not to be confused with the highly poisonous Hemlock plant
- Also, if you have any itching in the mouth or throat, anytime you take tea or plant material in stop immediately, your allergic, and your body is saying no!
Have a wonderful safe summer and enjoy!
From the desk of Dawn Lowe
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