The warm summer months are approaching, and we want to send you off with some important and easy hydration tips to keep your thirst quenched and hydration needs satisfied!
Water is an essential nutrient provided via the foods and fluid we intake. Therefore, drinking enough fluids throughout the day is an essential factor to ensure important bodily functions are carried out. The functions of water include moving nutrients through the body, excretion of wastes, maintaining normal blood pressure, protecting and cushioning your joints and organs, body temperature regulation, and decreasing the risk of dehydration.
Individual fluid requirements differ depending on your environment/climate, level of physical activity, health conditions, and age. General fluid recommendations are approximately 2.7 L per day for women and 3.7 L per day for men, coming from both beverages and food.
Daily losses of water occur through perspiration, urination, and exhalation, therefore it’s important to drink fluids regularly throughout the day to replenish the losses to avoid the risk of dehydration. Signs of dehydration include thirst, dried lips and mouth, feeling dizzy or faint, having a headache, flushed skin, dark yellow urine, digestive problems, lower blood pressure, and an increased heart rate. Though, it’s important to know that you may be dehydrated and not show any of the mentioned signs, which is a significant reason to sip on fluids regularly.
Staying hydrated is important year-round, yet fluid needs increase in warmer weather and when your physical activity increases. After spending a long winter indoors studying, who doesn’t want to get outside and enjoy the sunshine and outdoors as much as possible!? Therefore, to stay hydrated in the hot summer heat, whether you’re playing more sports outside, hiking, hitting the beach, or working remember to drink plenty of fluids!
Here are some practical hydration tips to incorporate into your daily routine!
- Opt for water when possible
- Drink a glass of water when you wake up
- Sip on water with every meal
- Carry a water bottle with you if you’re leaving the house for a prolonged period of time
- Drink water before you start feeling thirsty to avoid dehydration
- Don’t enjoy plain water? Flavour your water by adding lemon, lime, or orange wedges, and cucumber slices, strawberries, or fresh mint!
- Choose foods with a high-water content – such as celery, watermelon, tomatoes, cucumbers, strawberries, and grapefruit.
- Limit drinks with caffeine to 3 cups per day
- “Only water will hydrate you”
- Fact: Foods like cucumber and watermelon and fluids like milk, juice, broth, coffee, and tea count towards your daily fluid intake as they contain water
- “Coffee and tea will dehydrate you”
- Fact: The caffeine found in coffee and tea has a diuretic effect, though this does not mean that drinking moderate amounts of coffee and tea are dehydrating since the amount of fluid that you will lose via urine won’t be as much fluid as you had initially consumed. In fact, if you aren’t drinking excessive amounts of coffee (i.e. more than 3 cups of coffee per day), drinking a cup of coffee can have a hydrating effect and count towards your daily fluid needs.
- “You must drink eight glasses of water every day to stay healthy”
- As mentioned above, individual needs differ based on multiple factors. As long as you regularly drink fluids throughout the day, your hydration status should not be seriously impacted.
If you need help navigating your individual fluid needs, remember you can always contact Rai-Lee at firstname.lastname@example.org for support!