5 Steps Towards Optimal Hydration

5 Steps Towards Optimal Hydration

Without water, you cannot survive. That makes it a pretty important liquid, to put it lightly. There are numerous reasons that you should drink enough water every single day of your life. First of all, it keeps you alive and keeps your body functioning optimally. Water assists the body with the elimination of toxins and aids digestive function. When you don’t drink enough water and get dehydrated, things start to take a turn for the worse. 

People who fail to drink enough water can commonly experience fatigue, weight gain, weaker immune function, and headaches. The less water you drink, especially during the hotter summer months, the more at risk you are of developing heat-related illness. Dehydration is such a common experience during summer because of all the sweating that occurs. Not only do you lose water when you sweat, but you also lose electrolytes that you need for proper fluid balance in the body. When the body enters a state of dehydration in hot weather, it may not sweat fast enough to counteract the heat and cool itself down. That increases the risk of heat stroke, which is why you need to stay on top of your hydration.

The Answer To Hydration

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: people don’t drink enough water. The answer to optimal hydration does not lie in the bottom of a large soda, two cups of coffee, or a can of some energy drink with a radioactive color. If you want to keep the body in a hydrated state, experts suggest drinking half of your body weight in ounces of water every day. If you weigh 150 pounds and divide that by two to get 75, you should drink 75 ounces of water per day. Now, your consumption of water may need to increase based on level of physical activity, but the following tips should help you keep your hydration game on point. 

Drink Enough Water

Water isn’t the only factor that plays into your hydration efforts, but it does play a large role. As stated previously, the number one goal is to drink half your body weight in ounces of water each day. While you should pay attention to the water and other hydrating fluids that you intake, you should also take note of the fluids that leave your body. If you exercise on a hot day and sweat a lot, you may need to increase your water consumption. Also take note of your urine, as that is an indicator of how hydrated you are. 

Balance Your Electrolytes

When people think of electrolytes, they think of sports drinks. Yes, these beverages do contain electrolytes, but they also contain tons of added sugars and dyes. Electrolytes like potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sodium are key components to fluid balance in the body. You have to choose the right sources of electrolytes, though. Fruits and vegetables are excellent sources of electrolytes and help you fight electrolyte imbalance. Some electrolyte powders are great to consume, so long as they don’t have a lot of sugar. 

Eat Fruits And Vegetables

Speaking of fruits and vegetables, eating more of them can enhance your hydration efforts. Not only do fruits and vegetables contain electrolytes, but many of them also contain lots of water. One study looked at how fruits and vegetables affected hydration in children. Researchers noted that regular intake of fruits and vegetables relatively improved the hydration status in participants. Some great hydrating produce items include tomatoes, citrus fruits, berries, melons, cucumbers, bell peppers, kiwis, lettuce, zucchini, grapes, pineapple, celery, spinach, carrots, radishes, and broccoli. 

Stay Away From Dehydrating Beverages

If you want to stay hydrated, it stands to reason that you should avoid beverages that dehydrate the body. Caffeine and alcohol, for example, dehydrate the body by increasing urination and electrolyte loss. Plus, sugary drinks can also increase the risk of inflammation, blood sugar fluctuations, brain fog, and headaches. 

Consume Sea Salt

Throw out the table salt and get yourself some all-natural sea salt. Both Celtic sea salt or Himalayan pink salt are great salt options. Sprinkling a little sea salt on your food can help balance your water and potassium levels because of the sodium content. Together, sodium and potassium work to enhance hydration, but sodium also helps to keep your body in an alkaline state. Just don’t go overboard with sea salt because too much salt can negatively impact your health.

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