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7 Ways to Stay Hydrated This Summer

It’s hot, hot, hot outside. Are you drinking enough water? Anytime someone mentions a headache or lightheadedness, this is often the first question asked. Water has a big impact on how we feel and function every day, and it’s often not prioritized enough.

The human body is made up of 60% water. Sixty percent! Water is essential to the proper functioning of our body, specifically:

  • Regulation of body temperature
  • Metabolization and transportation of nutrients that our body uses as food
  • Assist in natural detox
  • Lubrication of joints

You can only imagine what happens in the body when it doesn’t get enough water. You might experience:

  • Fatigue
  • Dry mouth
  • Increased thirst
  • Decreased urination
  • Dry skin
  • Constipation
  • Dizziness
  • Lightheadedness
  • Headache

Any of those symptoms feeling familiar?

Infuse water with fresh flavors. There’s nothing better than water flavored with a little extra something. Keep a pitcher or large mason jar in your refrigerator filled with water and your favorite fresh infusions. Lemons, oranges, strawberries, watermelon, honeydew and herbs are all delicious add ins.

Go filtered. Drinking filtered water can not only impact the overall taste, but your health as well. In this article written by Dr. Frank Lipman, he notes that even the “clean” water we think we’re drinking isn’t all that clean. At the time of his writing, the EWG (Environmental Working Group) had found that roughly 85% of the population was drinking tap water that contained over 300 contaminants. There are several filtering options to consider, including: whole-house filtration system, under-the-counter filters, countertop filters and water pitchers.

Make it a mental game. When trying to get into a better habit of drinking water, it becomes more about awareness than it does the actual act of drinking water. Here are some specific ways to increase awareness in your day:

  • In sight, top of mind. Normally we would say “out of sight, out of mind”, but in this case, we want the opposite. In the morning or evening before, pour out eight glasses of water and set them in a place of optimal visibility, like the kitchen counter. The goal by the end of the day is to drink all of the glasses of water.
  • Set a timer. With the popularity of activity trackers, smart watches and apps, this option is already at your fingertips. Set a timer to remind you to drink water throughout the day until you get into the habit and don’t need the constant notification.
  • Track your intake. There are several ways to track your water intake, including water bottles that have designated lines for progress, writing it down, app tracking and the old rubber band trick. Place eight rubber bands (or the equivalent of at least 64 ounces) on your water bottle at the top, then move one down each time you finish and have to fill up your bottle.

Consume vegetables with a high water content. Drinking water isn’t the only way to boost hydration. Water that our body uses is also sourced from the foods we eat. Many water-rich foods are also in season right now, making it easier than ever to boost overall hydration. These include: watermelon, strawberries, cantaloupe, peaches, cucumber, lettuce, zucchini, celery, tomatoes, bell peppers, cauliflower, cabbage and citrus fruits.

What about sparkling water?

A common concern related to hydration is the question of sparkling water being a healthy option. After doing some research, it appears as if the overall consensus is that sparkling water can be a good source of hydration in moderation.

Carbonation occurs from infusing water with carbon dioxide gas under pressure. This result is carbonic acid, which creates an acidic water product. This is where the concern rises relating to dental health. The acidity is so minimal, however, that the concern for tooth enamel erosion over time isn’t supported by scientific research. The major issue occurs when that carbonation is combined with sugar, and well, that’s a whole other problem.

Cheers (to increased hydration)!

 


Carly Paige, health coach and cooking instructor, believes that healthy doesn’t have to be hard. Her mission is to show you simple swaps in and out of the kitchen to elevate your everyday that will transform your health. Carly is the author of Simply Swapped Everyday, a healthy guide and cookbook with over 75 plant-powered recipes and founder of FitLiving Eats – a place where she shares nutritious recipes and how-to guides.

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