Staying hydrated has its benefits, but how do you know if you are hydrated? Temperatures are rising all over the country, but especially for us here in Florida! The humidity that we experience in our beautiful state makes it even more crucial for us to stay hydrated.
Benefits of staying hydrated include:
- High energy levels
- Increased mood and memory (brain performance)
- Reduced headaches
- Prevents and relieves constipation
- Reduces risk of kidney stones
- Weight loss
- Maximizes physical performance
Everyone has different fluid needs based on their weight, amount and intensity of exercise, climate, pregnant/breastfeeding and age. Although there is no proven rule for the amount of water we should be consuming, there are some guidelines to help us get started and figure out our own individual needs:
- 1 mL per calorie we intake daily
- 8, 8 ounce glasses of water daily
- 30 mL per kilogram of body weight (divide your weight in pounds by 2.2 to get your weight in kilograms)
Dehydration can happen due to fluid loss from sweating, excessive urine output, fever, vomiting or diarrhea. What does dehydration “feel” like?
- Dry mouth, lips or eyes
- Dark yellow or strong-smelling urine
- Fatigue, light headed, headache, dizzy, lethargic, irritable
- Low urine output
Tips to Stay Hydrated
- Carry a reusable water bottle. You can find them at any local grocer store, dollar store, or even online if you are looking for a specific look.
- Consume fruits and vegetables, such as cabbage, zucchini, lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes, melons, and strawberries. These are all great sources of water in the diet.
- Limit foods that are overly salty or sugary as they decrease your hydration levels by moving water out of the cells, which causes dehydration.
- Add fruits, vegetables and/or herbs to your water to keep things interesting. Some quick recipe combinations include:
- Cucumber + lime + strawberry + mint
- Orange + star anise + hibiscus (gather loose herbs and flowers in a tea diffuser)
- Lemon + raspberry + rosemary
- Orange + blueberry + basil
- Use an app to set reminders. Some apps that you can search your app store for include:
- Water Reminder – Daily Tracker (free)
- Hydro Coach (free)
- Aqualert: Water Tracker Daily (free)
Remember that staying hydrated isn’t always easy, but it is important to maintain health in spirit, mind and body. Plus, it’s essential to feeling great in these hot summer months and beyond—so drink up!