Sugar Free Lemonade

So far my one pregnancy craving has been extremely tart lemonade.  I was buying a lot of it in my first trimester when the idea of making anything from scratch seemed way too draining for my very limited energy.  Now that I'm enjoying my little second trimester energy boost I've been much better about cooking for myself again and making all of my favorites from scratch so that I can control what goes into them.  I've been making a big batch of super tart lemonade every week to keep me hydrated and satisfy my cravings.  Pregnancy can leave you feeling parched from the increase in blood volume you take on to nourish the fetus and the placenta so hydration is extremely important during pregnancy.  Some women, especially in the first trimester, find water to be a little nauseating so figuring out other ways to sneak extra water into your diet is a good idea.  Lemons tend not to irritate the stomach so lemonade is a good idea for the first trimester and beyond.  I also try to have a glass of lemonade every time I eat a meal because having vitamin C at the same time as iron helps your body to absorb more of the iron that you're eating.  Iron is a crucial micronutrient to pregnancy since your body utilizes it to make that extra blood you're using to nourish the placenta and the fetus.  Below is my easy sugar free lemonade recipe that will keep you happy and hydrated all summer long, pregnant or not!

Sugar Free Lemonade

-8-12 lemons

-Filtered water

-Omica Organics stevia (any sweetener of your choice, I prefer stevia since it's sugar free and doesn't nourish candida bacteria in the body.  I use Omica Organics since they have a patented cold pressing process that allows for the best taste or SV Ayurveda's rose stevia when I want to add a floral note.)

Juice the lemons into a large pitcher and add filtered water until desired tartness is achieved.  For standard lemonade 1/4 lemon juice to 3/4 filtered water works well, if you want something super tart you can go up to 1/2 lemon juice to 1/2 filtered water.  Add sweetener of your choice until desired sweetness is achieved.  When working with stevia remember that is 200-300 times sweeter than sugar so a little bit goes a long way!  Keep the pitcher in your fridge and enjoy your delicious homemade lemonade throughout the week!