By now, we are well and truly into the silly season; a season full of long meals with our nearest and dearest and a season where many edible and drinkable gifts are exchanged.

The silly season, more often than not, tends to be a season of excess; we overdo the sugar, we overdo the alcoholic drinks, we don’t get enough sleep and so on. This leaves us feeling fatigued, stressed and emotional and places pressure on our body (namely the liver and the gut) to overcome the effects of our actions.

So today I’m giving you a secondary option – MOCKTAILS – a significantly underrated beverage. You can use simple, wholefood ingredients such as fresh fruit, herbs, fermented drinks and natural sweeteners to make yourself a refreshingly healthy drink without the booze. These drinks will have you joining in with those around you, without the added bonus of a hangover the next day. Furthermore, because of their healthy ingredients, these mocktails are likely to give you a bonus side serve of extra health benefits. What is there not to love?!

Here are a few of my top choices:

Strawberry Orange Mango Kombucha Mocktail – The Roasted Root.

Kombucha is a fermented drink which is easy enough to make at home using a handful of ingredients. It is full of probiotics, offering a range of health benefits. Kombucha is fizzy once fermented and thus makes it the ideal clean and healthy addition to your mocktail.

Watermelon Detox Turmeric Crush – Elissa Goodman.

Watermelon is the perfect summer fruit. Whether you eat it straight from the melon with a fork, slice some off or even whizz it up into a juice or smoothie, nothing beats the refreshing taste and cleansing feel of this fruit. Turmeric is a potent anti-inflammatory spice, which is going gangbusters in the health and wellness world at the moment. This drink is the perfect hydrating addition to any balmy summers day. Perhaps you could combine it with some sparkling water to give it a bit of a fizz.

Apple Zinger Tea-Tails – Love and Lemons

Who knew that tea could feature so largely in a mocktail?! I love both the look and the sound of this mocktail. The perfect combo of citrus, cinnamon, cloves mixed with apple cider vinegar and tea. It sounds just like a warm cosy hug to me!

A side note, if you can’t find the specific tea used, perhaps find a similar flavour from a different brand or experiment with a new flavour all together. When it comes to tea, the world is your oyster!

Probiotic Strawberry Soda – Fermented Food Lab

Water kefir supports both the liver and the digestive system giving rise to better health and vitality. It is also full of probiotics, vitamins and minerals and is antioxidant rich! What’s even better is that it is simple to make, once you get the grains. I love that this one is so simple, yet so delicious and nutritious!

Cucumber Mojitos (Boozy or not!) – Wholefully

These cucumber mojitos are a light, healthy and refreshingly tasty alternative to alcohol-laden cocktails. Cucumber makes for a cooling addition to any warm summers day and serves for a hydrating purpose in this summery mocktail.