OPINION

There's a long list of concoctions for hydration; anyone heard of switchel?

SWITCH IT UP: Maybe the original "energy drink", switchel was used by American farmers working in hay fields in the 18th century . Picture: Shutterstock

SWITCH IT UP: Maybe the original "energy drink", switchel was used by American farmers working in hay fields in the 18th century . Picture: Shutterstock

What's in your water bottle?

Just water. It's only 9am, so you can't possibly suspect there's furtive vodka in there.

I'm here to tell you that water is totally 2017. You need to upgrade to a drink that works harder.

Water is totally 2017. You need to upgrade to a drink that works harder.

Not vodka?

Something like this potion here, in my jar.

I actually thought that was a sample, not a drink. It's a tad ... cloudy.

You may scoff, but this drink is super-hydrating.

It may also be improving my digestion, boosting my immunity, clearing my skin, reducing my inflammation and generally working hard on behalf of my healthiest self.

Ok, so what is this potent potion?

Switchel.

I'm getting a strong Hogwarts vibe. Something to do with quidditch?

That's a snitch. Switchel is a drink made from apple cider vinegar, ginger and natural sweeteners like honey, molasses or maple syrup.

Eighteenth century American farmers used to chug jars of this "Haymakers' Punch" in the hayfields to replace their electrolytes after working up a sweat. It may well have been the original sports drink.

More lifestyle:

And now it's come full circle, right back into the hands of bearded people who like things in jars.

Sometimes the hipsters are on the mark. You should try switchel. It's delicious, too.

I just can't. You see, with all the kombuchas and kefirs and herbal elixirs and teas and tonics, I just don't have the room on my shelf or in my life for another wellness drink.

Can we please just return to old-fashioned water?

Absolutely. Let me introduce you to Smartwater, a solutions-focused hydration option for every occasion. Vapor-distilled, with added electrolytes. Gal Gadot and Jennifer Aniston are fans.

Nope, just water, please.

Activated charcoal water? Oxygenated water? Coconut water? Alkaline water?

Or can I interest you in Kangen Water, with five times the antioxidant power of green tea, and loved by Beyonce, Bill Gates, Brad Pitt, Demi Moore and more?

You'll need your own special at-home ionisation machine for that one and if you want top of the range, that's a cool $5,000. But you can't put a price on wellness.

I'm certainly not putting a $5,000 price on mine. I'll see you by the water cooler. Straight-up tap, no added madness.

Not even a slice of lemon?

Go on then. It feels deliciously old school.

  • Amy Cooper is a journalist who embraces wellness, but has also used kale to garnish a cocktail.