Staying hydrated through the summer heat

Whether you love the summer sun or you hibernate through until cooler temperatures are here, we all know the importance of staying hydrated in the summer heat to keep our bodies healthy and functioning. This is especially important if you have a job or hobby that puts you up close and personal with the heat on a day to day basis.

Let’s face it, it’s difficult to get in the daily recommended amount of water. Water isn’t all that tasty, especially when we have other beverages such as coffee, energy drinks, milk, fruit juices, and sports drinks that have so much more flavor. So here are a few tips on how to get that extra water in when your body desperately needs it.

First, let’s look at how much water your body needs on a daily basis and what factors cause this amount to vary depending on your lifestyle. When it comes to how much water you need, there are so many different opinions. Some say eight, eight-ounce glasses of water a day. Many experts go by a formula to calculate how much you need according to your weight, physical activity, and temperature of your environment. The quickest way to gauge how much water you need is also the easiest. The color of your urine tells you anything you need to know about your water intake. Your urine should be a light straw color. If your urine is dark yellow, your body needs more hydration. If your urine is clear, then you may be drinking a little too much water, and probably need to ease off so as to not cause an imbalance in your electrolyte levels. Yes, you read that right, there is such a thing as drinking too much water.

Here’s a few tips to make sure you’re getting the water intake your body needs.

  • When you wake up, before doing anything else, drink a glass of water. You’re at least slightly dehydrated in the mornings (more so depending on how you spent the evening before) so getting that water in first thing helps replenish and start your day on the right foot.

  • Have water-based foods throughout your day. Soups (broth, not cream based) as well as fresh fruits and vegetables are all great, easy ways to add extra water into your day without feeling like you’re tied to a water bottle.

  • Drink at least half a glass of water before every meal. This helps to keep your water intake consistent and fights off any signals of hunger that are actually a sign of thirst. This also cuts down on how much you’ll eat in one sitting, which, if we’re honest, can’t we all use a little help with portion control sometimes.

  • Drink a glass of water before bed. This helps you to rest better since you won’t be waking up in the middle of the night looking for a drink, and it also decreases the dehydration you’ll experience in the morning. 

Most importantly, listen to your body. When your body sends thirst signals to your brain, it usually means that your body is already dehydrated, listen to it, and give it what it wants.