Water is one of most crucial elements for all living things. Every organ, cell, and tissue in our bodies use it to function properly, which is why drinking enough water every day is important. It can help control calories, keep your skin looking healthy, maintain normal bowel function, maintains the balance of body fluids and more.
Not drinking enough water leads to dehydration, which can cause fatigue, thirst, lightheadedness, kidney stones and more.
Because more water is lost through sweat during summer, it’s especially important to remember to stay hydrated in the warmer months. In recognition of National Hydration Day, here are 7 tips for staying hydrated this summer:
Make Water Your Drink of Choice
According to The U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, the adequate daily fluid intake for the average, healthy adult living in a temperate climate is about 15.5 cups a day for men and about 11.5 cups a day for women. To prevent dehydration and make sure your body has the fluids it needs, make water your beverage of choice. It's a good idea to drink a glass of water with each meal and between meals, before, during and after exercise and if you feel thirsty.
Know the Signs of Dehydration
Dehydration may be categorized as mild, moderate, and severe. Signs of mild or moderate dehydration include thirst, dry or sticky mouth, dark urine, headache, and muscle cramps. Anyone can get dehydrated, but the odds are higher for some people, including babies and young children, older adults, those who are ill, those who are breastfeeding, and people with chronic disease.
If you think your symptoms of dehydration are severe, don’t hesitate to seek help! Dehydration can contribute to kidney stones, kidney failure and heatstroke, all life-threatening illnesses. Call 911 or go to the emergency room right away if you have symptoms of severe dehydration.
Eat Foods with High Water Content
While drinking water itself is especially important for staying hydrated, you can also increase your water intake with the foods you eat. There are many healthy foods that can contribute a large amount of water to your diet, including watermelon, peaches, skim milk, celery, cottage cheese, and more!
Replenish When You Sweat
The American Council on Exercise recommends drinking 7 to 10 ounces of fluid every 10 to 20 minutes during exercise. Remember to always carry a water bottle with you when exercising. This will allow you to take quick and easy sips of water during your workout.
Limit Your Soda and Coffee
Be careful about consuming too much caffeine or soda. Both caffeine and soda contain diuretic properties and too much can contribute to dehydration.
Carry Around Water
Always keep a bottle of water with you. Keep an easy-to-grab water bottle with you throughout your day and make sure that it's filled with plenty of water.
Make Water More Appealing
If you’re not a big water drinker and can’t seem to meet your recommended daily intake, try doing something to make your water more appealing to you. Add slices of fruit like lemon, lime, or orange. Infuse your water with fresh berries, Enhance your water with fresh mint. Jazz up that water so you make a healthier drink choice that still tastes good, looks appealing and quenches your thirst.
Whatever the season, drinking water and staying hydrated should be part of your daily routine. Stay safe, cool, and hydrated this summer!