Tips for Drinking More Water

By and large, drinking 64 ounces of water a day (eight, eight ounce glasses) is recommended to remain hydrated.  Of course, this amount can fluctuate given a person’s weight and their level of physical activity.  Below you’ll find tips, tricks, and recipes for getting yourself to drink more water throughout the day.

1.  A friend of mine gave me a recent Food Bank for NYC Healthy Recipes Pamphlet.  Inside, it read “Your Body is 60% Water.  Not 60% Soda.”  One the next page, they provided readers with a recipe for “Soda Water”… All you need is one bottle of seltzer water (it shouldn’t be flavored) and then 2 tablespoons of your favorite juice (grape, apple, orange, cranberry, etc.)  To prepare the beverage, pour seltzer water into a glass and leave about an inch of space left at the top to pour the juice into.  Enjoy!

2.  Drink tea!  Filled with antioxidants and plenty of water you’ll feel hydrated in no time!  Also, because there are so many different flavor combinations, it will never get robotic or boring!  (Add honey for a natural sweetener).

3.  Another recipe included in the booklet was “Citrus Cucumber Water”… to make it, you need a lemon, lime, orange, and cucumber, and half a gallon of water.  Simply place the slices of fruit and veggies and water into a pitcher.  then place in fridge for about two hours to allow the flavors to infuse.

4.  Dilute 100% Fruit or Veggie Juice with water…something that’s so easy, but totally makes a big difference!

5.  Buy yourself a snazzy looking water bottle and carry it with you everywhere you go…you’ll be much more likely to drink it and you’ll find yourself not purchasing as many specialty drinks and sodas.

Hope this helps!  Let me know if you have tips to incorporate more water into your diet!

Until Next Week… Plan Well, Pack Well, Live Well,

Katie 🙂


Changing the World One Dinner At A Time

I’ve recently been introduced to an organization called “Dining for Women” which is quite literally changing the world “one dinner at a time.”  Basically, chapter members “dine in” together as a chapter once a month.  Each member brings a contribution to the meal as well as a monetary donation equal to the amount they would have spent had they dined out at a restaurant.  All donations from the 9000 chapters worldwide are then combined to support a “carefully selected international program” each month.  In the past, the group has funded grassroots programs in economic development, education, vocational training, and healthcare to name a few.  All of the programs that “Dining for Women” supports are aimed at improving the lives of women and girls living in impoverished countries, and providing them with “a hand up, not a handout” (Dining).

Here are a few FAQs answered on their website, which can be accessed at (Dining):

“Why do we give only to women and girls internationally?

Since 75 percent of the world’s 1.3 billion people living in extreme poverty are women and children who live in developing nations, it makes sense that if we are to change the level of poverty worldwide we do it through the empowerment of these women.

Also, 85 percent of money Americans donate to charitable purposes stays in the United States. Of the 15 percent that is donated internationally, private foundations rather than individuals give the majority of funds donated. Here are some startling statistics:

  • 70 percent of the world’s 1.3 billion poor are women living on less than $1 a day.
  • Women do 60 percent of the world’s work and earn 10 percent of the world’s income.
  • Women spend 50-70 percent of time men do on paid work and still do 200 percent of unpaid work in comparison to men.
  • Women produce 70-75 percent of the world’s food crops.
  • One year of schooling for the mother reduces child mortality by about 10 percent.
  • Women cultivate, plow, and harvest more than half of all the food in the world.

As Nicholas Kristof, NY Times Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and co-author of Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide states,

“The oppression of women worldwide is the human rights cause of our time. And their liberation could help solve many of the world’s problems, from poverty to child mortality to terrorism.” 

How will you know how the programs spent the donations?

As part of DFW’s program acceptance process, the organizations commit to providing Dining for Women with multiple follow-up reports, detailing how donations were spent, number of women and girls impacted, success stories and challenges faced while implementing the program.  Follow-up reports are posted on the Programs/Follow-up Reports webpage and in the monthly newsletters.

Is DFW affiliated with any specific religion or political party?

The Dining for Women organization does not affiliate or align itself with any religious or political organization, and no programs that are funded by Dining for Women are sponsored by or are a part of a religious or political organization. However, Dining for Women welcomes anyone, from all religious and political beliefs, to join together in our mission of improving the lives of women through the power of collective giving.”

To view a short clip from the creator of this organization, Marsha Wallace, copy and paste link into your Internet browser:

To view a short clip about the Dining for Women 2012 Introduction, copy and past this link into your Internet browser:

I think that this is an awesome and empowering giving circle… please let me know what you think!

Until Next Week… Plan Well, Pack Well, Live Well,

Katie 🙂

Works Cited

Dining for Women. n.d. Dining for Women I, n.d. Web. 15 Oct. 2013. <>

What is Health? Part Two

My grateful thanks to all who responded to last week’s blog.  I really appreciate you sharing your thoughts about what health is.

As I wrote last week, Josh Billings said “Health is like money, we never have a true idea of its value until we lose it.”

I totally agree with this.  Health is something that is so easy to take for granted, but once has been lost, it can be so difficult to recover from and get back.  In 2002, I had my first experience with someone whose health was failing when my Papa found out that he had terminal cancer.  With his last 365 days left to live, he spent it with me and other people he loved most in the world. Overnight, the grandfather I had known in health became different from the man I came to know in sickness.  Out of seemingly nowhere, he became limited by his own body and lost the freedom that comes with being in sound physical condition.  His life ceased to be the adventure that I know it could have continued to be, had he recovered and was still here, able to share his passion and zest for life with others.  With Papa’s passing, one of the things that I learned was that health is sometimes not forever.  Chronic disease and illness can change everything irrevocably in an instant and damages the human body in such a way that it will never be the same again.  However, this is but one definition of health or lack thereof.

Conversely, day to day health, without the limitations of serious illness, is a result of the choices that we make everyday.  That in itself can be both exhilarating and even a little bit daunting, because we know that it’s up to us, it falls in our lap, and our decisions are in our own hands.  At any time, you can be your own stumbling block or stepping stone.  The other thing that can be scary is there is no “pretty” or “perfect” answer of what health looks like that can be transferred from individual to individual.  Because we are all different, each person has to work towards cultivating the diet/exercise “formula” or “master plan” that makes them feel the strongest and most beautiful.  You’ll know when your own personalized health plan is optimal when you constantly feel a radiant “glow.”

No higher education degree, certificate, or license is necessary to be healthy.  It’s ironic how if you want to be an astronaut, literature teacher, mathematician, or archaeologist, you would most definitely need a college degree, etc.  To get where you most want to be in life, and then to get the most out of where you are in life, you need your health.  Your health, in your hands, allows you to create the life of your dreams and live the adventure you’ve always wanted.

To your health!

Until Next Week… Plan Well, Pack Well, Live Well,

Katie 🙂

What Is Health? Part One

Below you’ll find a few quotes discussing four individual thoughts about health and the ways we can achieve healthfulness:

“Health is a relationship between you and your body”  -Terri Guillemets

“If you’re concerned about your health, you should probably avoid products that make health claims. Why? Because a health claim on a food product is a strong indication it’s not really food, and food is what you want to eat” –Michael Pollan

“Health is not simply the absence of sickness.”  -Hannah Green

“Health is like money, we never have a true idea of its value until we lose it.”  -Josh Billings

Which of these quotes most resonates with you?  How do you define the word “health” in your own life?  What do you do to achieve health?  Next week, I’ll try to answer some of these questions with my own opinions about health, but first, I want to hear from you!

Until Next Week… Plan Well, Pack Well, Live Well,

Katie 🙂