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Stay hydrated over summer

Wellbeing

Stay hydrated over summer

With the summer holidays well underway, it’s timely to remember the importance of hydration. TRISTAN HALL lists the top five ways to stay on top.

Living in Queensland, we tend to forget one important part of our health over summer – hydration.  In addition, the hidden side effects of our favourite temptations at this time of year – food, alcohol, partying, day time napping (which are wholeheartedly encouraged in moderation) – are that they tend to take fluid from the body.

Here are a few hot tips to stay cool and hydrated during the holiday season.

  1. Drink water. This is the most obvious solution for maintaining hydration, but how much should we drink? A general guideline is eight cups for women and 10 for men each day, however this is affected by exertion, time in the sun, alcohol, food etc.

The more of these you do, generally the more water you should consume. If the idea of pure water is not for you, try water additives to add flavour and kick to your drinks.

  1. Water alternatives. Sodas, iced tea, coffee, and other drinks that contain caffeine are second best to good old-fashioned water when you’re trying to stay hydrated. They act as diuretics, so even if you’re getting water, you’re also pulling a little extra fluid from your body because of the caffeine.
  2. Eat fruit. An alternative method to stay hydrated is eating. We are blessed to have amazing fruit that are full of water available during the summer season. Cucumbers, watermelon, salads, strawberries, paw-paw are just a few fruits that can assist with hydration levels.

Research also shows that eating foods that are full of water helps keep you satisfied on fewer calories, an added bonus.

  1. Meat and other foods. Surprisingly, meat can contain up to 60 per cent water, however you do have to be mindful of salt intake as a side effect of large meat-based meals.

Food can make up to 20 per cent of your daily fluid intake, so stay well-nourished to reduce the chances of dehydration.

  1. Monitor fluid loss. It is important to monitor and maintain fluid levels. If you notice darker urine, excessive thirst or potentially even light-headedness, chances are you are starting to become dehydrated. Employ some of the above strategies to assist your fluid levels.

 Tristan Hall is an exercise physiologist at Full Circle Wellness. Call 0431 192 284 or visit fullcirclewellness.com.au

 

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