Hydration is important all year round, but especially during the summer months. We are outside, active, sweating more, and our body is losing more water. We then need to replace that fluid consistently during the day. Adequate fluid intake helps regulate body temperature, carries nutrients throughout the body, assists digestion, and more. Dehydration can sneak up on us when we’re having fun in the sun. Here are some things to keep in mind that will help you stay hydrated.
- Make your water bottle your best friend: you can’t stay hydrated if you have nothing to drink. Find yourself a nice water bottle that travels with you wherever you go. Infuse water with fruits like lemons, limes, berries, or mint for a refreshing burst of flavor. They even make water bottles with an infuser! In addition to healthy and hydration benefits, it’s also sustainable to have a reusable water bottle to reduce the number of plastic bottled beverages purchased.
- It’s not all about beverages: fruits and veggies with high water contents can contribute to your hydration status. Watermelon, celery, cucumbers, tomatoes, cantaloupes, and more can all assist in keeping us hydrated. Soups, broths, and smoothies are also highly hydrating. Be sure to include a mix of beverages and hydrating foods in your diet.
- Keep track: to ensure you are drinking enough water throughout the day, start a hydration journal and document the amount of fluid you consume during the day. If you are one who forgets to drink, or does not always feel thirsty, setting an alarm on your watch or phone a few times during the day, can help remind you that it’s time to hydrate.
- Nutrients to boost hydration: We need more than just water to prevent dehydration – we also need electrolytes and carbohydrates. Electrolytes like sodium, potassium, chloride, magnesium, and calcium are all necessary for nerve and muscle function and are lost through sweat. Take a look at your daily intake and be sure to include foods with these electrolytes.
- Make it a habit: drink a beverage with each meal to make sure you are hydrating throughout the day. Remember, this beverage doesn’t always have to be water. A glass of low fat milk adds calcium, vitamin D, and protein to a meal, seltzer is always a good options if you are craving some bubbles, and coffee or tea in the morning are also hydrating.
- Don’t ignore thirst: this tip is super important. If you feel thirsty, grab water or another healthy beverage and drink up!