Menu Monday: Sun Tea

In light of April being National Humor and Laughter month, today’s recipe utilizing something also great for the mood: sunshine!

“Sun Tea” is brewed using the heat and sunshine of a warm day to create a delicious beverage people swear by. This would also be a great activity for parents to do with young children. I love this recipe because it has no added sugars, nor non-nutritive “fake” sugars, and instead, uses oranges and mint leaves for flavor. Many individuals I work with have goals of weaning off of sugar sweetened beverages or “diet” beverages with non-nutritive sweeteners.

We know that sweetened beverages such as soda or sweet tea provide empty calories with no nutritional benefit that may promote weight gain and elevated blood sugar. More research is revealing the impact of non-nutritive sweeteners, which provide no additional calories or sugar, but may not be as harmless as once thought. Studies show non-nutritive sweeteners consumed over time may negatively alter your gut bacteria—which is linked to many aspects of health—as well as increase appetite or promote cravings for sweets.

So what should you drink? Water, seltzer, and unsweetened tea flavored with herbs or produce is a great option for everyday beverages without added sugar or non nutritive sweeteners. Below is a recipe for Sun Tea that fits the bill. Drink up, and let us know what you think!

 

Ingredients:
  • 12 tea bags such as Lipton
  • One gallon water
  • 3 medium oranges, sliced
  • A bunch of fresh mint leaves

 

Instructions:
  • Place the tea bags, oranges, and mint in a large glass pitcher
  • Slowly fill with water
  • Cover with lid or plastic wrap and place outside on a warm sunny day for at least 4 hours
  • Bring inside and strain tea, discarding tea bags and oranges/mint
  • Serve over ice

 

 

 

Light up your day with tea!

 

 


 

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– KEELEY MEZZANCELLO, MS, RD, CSCS

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