Written By Alena Walrath, PTA
Grabbing a glass of water is so simple, yet sometimes it’s easy to forget. As temperatures rise, staying hydrated is especially important. So what’s the best way to stay hydrated? While drinking water is certainly the best option for staying hydrated in most situations, it’s not the only option. Consuming other types of foods and beverages will increase your overall fluid level. Fruits and vegetables are great options for their nutritional value and higher water content. While beverages other than water can help to keep you hydrated, the downside is that they contain extra calories, sugar, and sometimes caffeine, which can contribute to weight gain.
How much water should you drink? A good guideline is to drink whenever you feel thirsty and drink gradually throughout the day. You should also make sure to drink more when it’s hot outside, when you’re exercising, or when you’re sick. If you’re pregnant, you should be consuming more water as well. Another consideration for determining the amount of water you need includes any medications you might be taking or the presence of certain health conditions (such as thyroid disease, or kidney, liver, or heart problems).
How do you know if you’re not getting enough water? Look for warning signs of dehydration. If you notice weakness, low blood pressure, dizziness, confusion, or dark urine, you may be dehydrated. Mild cases of dehydration can be resolved by drinking more fluids, but in other situations, it’s important to seek medical attention.
Check out this short video from Todd Buckingham, Ph.D, Exercise Physiologist at Mary Free Bed Sports Rehabilitation’s Performance Lab for some additional tips on staying hydrated this summer.
Cheers to summer!