Summer is a wonderful time of year. As wonderful as it is, sometimes it can present its own set of health issues. In our last post, we talked about how one of those issues is a sunburn.
Another problem that can occur, particularly in the hot summer months, is dehydration. Simply put, dehydration occurs when our body loses water. This is especially common in the summer months when the heat of the sun causes us to perspire. Add to that any kind of physical exertion or working out, and you lose even more water. By the time you actually feel thirsty, your body is already dehydrated. That is why it is essential to stay hydrated, even if you don’t necessarily feel thirsty.
Another way to tell if you are getting enough fluids is to check the color of your urine. If it is dark yellow, you are dehydrated. If it is light yellow, you are hydrated. If it’s clear, you’re definitely hydrated and may even need to cut back on your fluids.
Here are several ways to make sure you stay hydrated this summer:
Drink More Water
Pure, filtered water is the best drink to consume for hydration. Coffee, tea, and sodas do not count as drinks that hydrate. In fact, these beverages are known as diuretics, which means they actually pull water from the body because they cause you to urinate more frequently.
It’s a good idea to invest in a good water filter that can filter out the impurities in regular tap water.
Fill several water bottles full, and sip throughout the day. I love my Life Factory Water Bottle, because it’s made from glass, and I don’t have to worry about harmful chemicals from plastic leaching into my water.
Water bottles with inserts are all the rage right now. You can put fruit into the infuser, and it infuses a subtle flavor into your water. If you have Mason jars, you can try the Mason jar infuser. This is an easy and fun way to stay hydrated.
Try Coconut Water
Think of coconut water as nature’s gatorade – but without the high fructose corn syrup and artificial colorings and flavorings. Coconut water is full of natural electrolytes (potassium, magnesium, calcium, etc.). So if you get dehydrated, coconut water can quickly infuse your cells with these electrolytes. Coconut water is also rich is vitamins, minerals, amino acids, enzymes, and antioxidants.
Still not convinced? Check out this article for more of the amazing health benefits of coconut water. And for a delicious way to use coconut water, check out my Strawberry Pineapple Smoothie – it’s one of my favorites!
Eat Hydrating Foods
Another easy way to make sure you’re getting plenty of fluids is to eat foods rich in water. Foods like cantaloupe, watermelon, and cucumbers contain at least 80% water. Working these foods into your diet is an easy and delicious way to stay hydrated during the hot summer months. Try a delicious smoothie, like this Melon, Mint, and Cucumber Smoothie, to incorporate these foods into one hydrating treat!
Dehydration doesn’t have to ruin your summer. Make sure to drink water, coconut water, and eat hydrating foods throughout the day to make sure you are getting the fluids you need. Check out this handy little Hydration Calculator to find out exactly how much you should be consuming during the day.