In Drinks, Recipes
Better Than Water in a quart mason jar, sitting on deck railing with blue sky and green trees in the background.

Better Than Water Morning Detox Tonic

This Better Than Water Detox Drink helps aid digestion, boosts immune function, reduces inflammation and can even help shed a few pounds, plus it tastes great!

We’re all searching for that magic tonic, that special detox drink, powder, or pill that takes away all our ills and brings health and vitality to our lives. If you don’t already realize it, please let me be the first to inform you, IT DOESN’T EXIST! But that doesn’t mean this Better Than Water is a lie.

True health comes through knowledge. Knowing how food, stress and activity are all individual cogs working together to create health in our body. Learning about our foods, reducing daily stress and being physically active are daily choices, hard daily choices, but individual decisions that add up to produce better health.

Health doesn’t come in a drink, it doesn’t come in a pill, and it doesn’t come in a 30-day program costing hundreds of dollars. They’re all quick and temporary fixes, at best. “Health” is a daily decision, with a lifelong outlook, not a 30-day program. We can attain health by continually learning and living a healthy day…today!

What’s does this have to do with water? Knowledge! Just because I know something is healthy, doesn’t mean I always do it.

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Confession time…I don’t enjoy drinking water, but I know how important it is (although we can agree to disagree about the recommended 8 cups a day…it’s my belief this is too much for some, while not enough for others*). Water helps regulate our bodily functions. Without water our body cannot function, organs shut down and we die.

But I still don’t enjoy drinking it!

If you’re like me and struggle to hydrate, try adding a few simple ingredients to to your water and enjoy the added benefits of aiding digestion, boosting your immune system, reducing inflammation, supporting kidney function and even promoting a healthy heart (possibly even shedding excess weight)!

Plus, when I carry my water around with me, I just naturally drink more, so I like to keep my water in one of these Hydro Flasks that keeps my water cold till the very last drop (seriously, if you didn’t drink it, the ice would still be solid the next day!).

I call this recipe the “Better Than Water” drink! And it’s a cinch to mix up first thing in the morning. It’s most beneficial when consumed on an empty stomach, but don’t let a full tummy keep you from enjoying the perks. Drink it once in the morning, or sip on it throughout the day, especially if it helps you consume adequate water.

* Similar to other general recommendations (Ex. BMI), the “8” glasses a day does not consider body size, body type or activity level. Discussion starter? Sure. Regimented practice? Let’s talk some more! 

  • Our family chooses to use Plant Therapy for their high quality, pure, therapeutic grade essential oils offered at affordable prices. For $10 off your first order, click the Plant Therapy Bottle and use the promo code: signup10. This is an affiliate link, which means you get to enjoy the same great low prices for quality oils, and we’ll get a little kick-back to help keep food in the fridge…thanks! As always, Plant Therapy offers free shipping and returns on all orders (with no minimum purchase).
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Better Than Water Morning Detox Tonic for Health and Weight Loss

What are the health benefits of a detox drink?

Apple Cider Vinegar

  • Organic, raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar (ACV) contains active, live cultures (the “mother”) and is high in phosphorus, magnesium, potassium and calcium.
  • ACV is said to aid in weight loss because it stimulates digestion, expels toxins from the liver and supports your digestive enzymes.
  • ACV can be useful for those with candida overgrowth (excess yeast in the gut) as the acid and enzymes help kill this excess yeast.
  • It’s also great for those suffering from Leaky Gut Syndrome, often caused by an imbalance of good:bad bacteria.
  • It can reduce heart burn (acid reflux) usually caused by too little stomach acid (not too much as is commonly believed, and often why popping TUMS all day doesn’t relieve the symptoms).

Hey! If it was good enough for Hippocrates (the “father of medicine”), it’s worth giving it a try to see if you notice the benefits!

  • Do be sure your ACV is both organic and raw. Organic will ensure the apples used to make the cider are not coated with pesticides, heavy metals and toxins, and raw (with the “mother”) means the active cultures are still living and beneficial.


  • Natural unrefined sweetener
  • Full of trace minerals, vitamins and amino acids
  • Helps soothe a sore throat
  • Can help relieve and sometimes prevent the symptoms of allergies (especially honey local to your area)

If using honey, be sure it’s raw and organic. Raw honey has not been pasteurized (heated) which kills off the active enzymes, basically rendering it useless. Organic honey is tested for pesticide residue and comes from bees that have not pollinated flowers or plants treated with pesticides or herbicides.

Because honey is high on the glycemic index, if you have insulin issues or have a hard time keeping your sugar intake below 25g a day, a great alternative is Stevia(More information on sugar and their differences here.)

Lemon Essential Oil

A beneficial oil with a citrusy, bright scent and amazingly strong flavor (a couple drops is all you need). Lemon essential oil has many benefits, some of which are:

  • Can relieve discomforts from colds, fevers, flu and asthma.
  • Fights against respiratory infections like bronchitis, coughs, and sore throat.
  • Stimulates the production of white blood cells, aiding immune function.
  • Reduce inflammation throughout the body.
  • Soothe acidity and heartburn (by balancing the pH level in your stomach).
  • Aid digestion, relieve constipation and promote elimination of waste.
  • Relive arthritis (due to the anti-inflammatory properties).
  • Lower blood pressure and promote healthy blood circulation.
  • Aid in the removal of toxins from your skin and body.


  • Contains cinnamaldehyde which is anti-inflammatory.
  • The scent of cinnamon has been shown to boosts brain function.
  • Can support weight loss by reducing blood glucose concentration and enhancing insulin sensitivity.
  • Can relieve a sore throat due to its antibacterial and warming properties. Cinnamon can increase blood flow and blood oxygen levels to help fight infection.
  • Cinnamaldehyde contains anti-cancer properties.
  • Relieve symptoms of ADHD by boosting brain function and aiding in focus. The antioxidants in cinnamon can counteract oxidative stress (which some ADHD patients have been shown to be under this type of stress). 
  • Cinnamon helps eliminate sharp rises in blood sugar by slowing the emptying of your stomach, as well as improving the effectiveness (or sensitivity) of insulin. (Source: Dr. Mercola)

Go mix up your “Better Than Water” tonic today and start enjoying the benefits of these ancient ingredients!

Better Than Water in a quart mason jar sitting on the rail of a deck with blue sky and green trees in the background.

Better Than Water - Morning Tonic

Better Than Water Detox Tonic helps aid digestion, boosts immune function, reduces inflammation and can even help shed a few pounds, plus it tastes great!
5 from 1 vote
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Course: Beverages, Drinks
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Calories: 21kcal
Author: Full of Days



  • Mix all ingredients in a 16 ounce glass jar, screw on lid and shake to combine.
  • Sip first thing in the morning (on an empty stomach is best) and before meals.


  • It’s best to make each batch fresh (or a large batch at the beginning of the day) as lemon essential oil can lose potency over time.
  • It’s also best served room temperature as the live cultures are most active when they’re warm…however, I prefer it over ice and don’t mind waiting a few minutes for the benefits while my body warms the good guys (aka: beneficial bacteria) up a bit!
  • *Be sure to source only the highest quality essential oils.


Serving: 2cups | Calories: 21kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Sodium: 248mg | Fiber: 0.2g | Sugar: 5.6g
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Showing 14 comments
  • Avatar

    How much do you drink in the morning? Just a sip? Gulp? A cup? Also, how long does it last in the fridge? Going to make this tonight, it sounds good.

    • Kelsey Steffen
      Kelsey Steffen

      Hi Ashley, I drink anywhere from 1-4 cups! Ideally, a full quart is my goal, sometimes I just sip on it throughout the day and keep adding ice as needed.

  • Avatar

    If I wanted to use fresh lemon, as opposed to the essential oil, how much would I use?

    • Kelsey Steffen
      Kelsey Steffen

      I’ve used fresh lemon MANY times in this Christine! I usually use about half a lemon, but sometimes if it’s small or not very juicy, I’ll squeeze the whole thing. It’s really to taste, so start with 1/4 and see if it’s “lemony” enough for you! 🙂 ENJOY!

  • Avatar

    if I want to use fresh lemon juice instead of essential oil, how much would you suggest

    • Kelsey Steffen
      Kelsey Steffen

      Hi Bonnie, great question! For 32 oz. I would use about half a lemon. Enjoy!

  • Avatar
    Megan Stevens

    This is lovely! I love the addition of lemon essential oil; I haven’t seen that before in a digestive tonic, and it sounds delicious.

    • Kelsey Steffen
      Kelsey Steffen

      The addition of lemon is my favorite part! Mixed with the ACV it creates a yummy flavor!

  • Avatar
    Emily @ Recipes to Nourish

    This sounds lovely! I need to start doing this more often. I think it would help me get my daily water in.

    • Kelsey Steffen
      Kelsey Steffen

      Yes, that’s one of my reasons for drinking it, too! Makes me look forward to that huge cup of water a little more!

  • Avatar

    I always start the day with lemon water, it’s such a great way to start the day, will have to try yours!

  • Avatar
    linda spiker

    Great way to start the day!

  • Avatar
    Carol Little R.H.

    This is a favourite of mine. Really, it’s one of many versions of the ol’ ‘master cleanse’.
    Love to mix these flavours and positive herb/food attributes for a great way to start the morning!

  • Avatar

    That sounds so good. Thanks for sharing this recipe.

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