The sun doesn’t seem to be letting up, even though summer is coming to a close in about one month. Because of the intense heat and humidity, health officials recommend drinking more water than you normally would. In order to properly hydrate the body, though, you have to do more than chug water, bottle after bottle. The best way to enhance hydration efforts is by eating water-rich foods.
Staying properly hydrated can help you avoid dehydration, which causes fatigue, skin problems, and headaches. Cramps are another big symptom of dehydration, primarily resulting from the loss of electrolytes. When you couple your water intake with the electrolytes and water you get from water-rich foods, you can better avoid dehydration and the symptoms that come with it.
Several health studies found that staying hydrated works to regulate body temperature, flush waste from the body, and lubricate joints. By regularly drinking or eating water, you allow nutrients easier access to your cells. You may also improve your sleep and mood when you’re hydrated. To help enhance your hydration efforts, start eating more of the foods in this article. Some of them are in season for summer, so get your hands on them while they are freshest.
Loaded with beta-carotene and H2O, cantaloupe is one of summer’s most delicious seasonal fruits. It helps to hydrate you on a hot day, being over 90% water, and delivers 37.4 milligrams (mg) of vitamin C in one large wedge. That’s over 42% of your recommended daily intake of vitamin C! Plus, cantaloupe offers 2,060 micrograms (mcg) of beta-carotene, which your body uses to make vitamin A.
Let’s keep the summer produce theme going by highlighting the juicy peach. Close to 90% of their weight is water, but they also offer lots of potassium and vitamins A & C, and several B-vitamins. Because peaches are high in fiber and water, they are naturally low in calories, making them great to enjoy on your weight loss diet.
Is watermelon the most classic summer fruit? We think it is! As the name suggests, watermelon has a high water content, with more than 90% of its weight being water. It is both refreshing and sweet, being one of the best fruits to help you counteract the effects of dehydration. The sugar in watermelon will help boost energy levels as the body absorbs the water. Additionally, watermelon is an excellent source of vitamin C, vitamin A, potassium, and fiber, making it a great addition to your diet.
Boasting lots of water and vitamin C, strawberries make for a great addition to your list of hydrating fruits. Add them to your water, smoothies, or salads to enjoy them this summer. One study found that people who ate 500 grams of strawberries a day for a month had lower levels of bad cholesterol and triglycerides. Strawberries are also vitamin C superstars, delivering nearly 99% of the recommended daily intake of vitamin C in just one cup.
Tomatoes are a staple of summer, with many heirloom varieties showing up in local grocery stores and farmers markets. Not only are they more than 90% water, but they are also loaded with lycopene, an antioxidant that may protect against sunburns. Is that not the best added bonus for summer? Enjoy tomatoes in freshly made juices or on a delicious summertime salad.
One of the benefits of drinking lots of water is that you enhance your body’s digestive process. Pineapple also contains an enzyme, bromelain, that improves the body’s ability to break down proteins. Pineapple may help reduce inflammation and swelling, while also providing the body with lots of fiber. Most importantly, though, pineapple has a water content of about 87%, so eating more of it helps you improve your hydration efforts.
Known for their vitamin C content, oranges happen to be excellent hydrators. Not only do they quench your thirst on a hot day, but they also help optimize immune function with vitamin C and antioxidants. It is very important that you enjoy fresh oranges or freshly squeezed orange juice to reap the hydrating benefits. Drinking orange juice from a bottle or carton increases your consumption of processed ingredients, sugars, and artificial flavors. Those things essentially cancel out the benefits of oranges.
Made up of 95% water, cucumbers are another healthy, hydrating fruit to add to your summer food list. Compared to other water-rich produce items, cucumbers have the lowest amount of calories. Cucumber only contains eight calories per half-cup. You can easily incorporate cucumbers into smoothies, detox waters, juices, salads, or gazpacho recipes.