Summer really did hit us by surprise this year! In the blink of eye, temperatures rose well into the 30’s and with the hot sun beaming on us wherever we go, it’s easy to become dehydrated.
Here are some tips to staying hydrated this summer:
1. Drink more water.
Your mom was right when she told you to carry your water bottle with you everywhere you go. Water is essential to the health of your body. Most people know that water is necessary for the removal of wastes and toxins from the body, but many people are unaware of the negative health effects of dehydration. Dehydration stresses your heart so that it needs to pump harder to get sufficient oxygen to your muscles and brain – without water your muscles don’t function optimally and your mental capacity decreases. Water also plays a crucial role in cell repair, so ensuring hydration helps to slow down the aging process and prevents things such as premature wrinkles and memory loss. If you’re trying to lose weight, water is the best beverage for you to consume – it has zero calories but is full of health benefits!
2. Recognize when you’re dehydrated.
Common signs and symptoms of dehydration include:
- Increased thirst
- Dry mouth and/or swollen tongue
- Heart palpitations
- Drowsiness or fainting
The key to preventing dehydration is to drink water throughout the day, BEFORE you start to feel thirsty. By the time your body is giving you cues to drink, you have already been dehydrated for some time and your body is trying very hard to compensate for the lack of fluids.
If you have a tendency to forget to drink water, there are many different water alarm apps (such as WaterLogged, iDrated, WaterMinder, Eight Glasses a Day, etc.) that you can download onto your phone to remind you it’s time to take a sip. Some also have the option to keep a record of how many glasses of water you’ve had during the day to help you stay on track.
3. Invigorate your water.
Drinking water doesn’t have to be boring. Experiment with different fruit and herbal infusions that turn your water into a delicious and refreshing drink. Here are some suggestions to start:
If you like stronger flavour, prepare your infusions in a pitcher or jar and leave overnight in the fridge. An easy way to prepare chilled infusions is to freeze your fruits and herbs into ice cubes and drop them directly into your water when you’re ready for a drink.
4. Bring healthy outdoor snacks.
If you’re heading outdoors or to the beach, pack smart snacks. Toss those salty snacks like chips and pretzels that make you more dehydrated. Instead, bring cut up veggies and fruits that have natural water and mineral content. Some good choices are watermelon, cucumbers, pineapple, berries, oranges, grapes, bell peppers, carrots, celery, lettuce, kiwi, apples and pears. Coconut water is also a great option to add to the cooler but plain old water is still the most affordable choice to stay hydrated!
Cheers to staying healthy and hydrated while having fun in the sun!