Stay Hydrated: Beyond Water – The Importance of Fluid Intake and Hydrating Foods

2023-07-22 06:47:00

With an unprecedented rise in temperatures hitting countries, water is more important than ever. If you don’t drink enough fluids to produce enough sweat on a hot day, you may be more likely to get heatstroke. We know very well that dehydration is caused by extreme heat, and it may carry serious health complications if it is not treated quickly.

Here lies the importance of fluid intake, and it can go beyond drinking water. Hydration of the body simply means consuming a sufficient amount of fluid that prevents you from feeling thirsty, and this amount varies from one person to another.

There are many ways and means that make you stay hydrated besides water. According to experts, there is a list of some foods that contain water, and they can maintain the balance and hydration of the body, according to what the newspaper published. “The New York Times”.

“We need to drink a lot of water all the time, in fact we have to drink 8 glasses to stay hydrated,” explains Tamara Hugh Butler, a sports medicine physician and fluid balance specialist at Wayne State University. “So any food or drink that contains fluids can be a good source to keep the body hydrated, because the body doesn’t care about the source as much as getting fluids.”

Fresh fruits and vegetables are excellent sources not only because they contain a large amount of water, but also because they are rich in fiber, which has many health benefits. Watermelon and cantaloupe, for example, contain a high percentage of water, as well as strawberries, lemons, grapes, cucumbers and celery, which are good choices.

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As for drinks, they can all be hydrating, such as juice, milk, tea and coffee, which contain the fluids the body needs. But beware of consuming sugary drinks, as they will not be a good food option. And in the summer heat, frozen desserts can be eaten, such as ice popsicles that contain liquids.

Contrary to popular belief, caffeinated beverages are also hydrating. Although caffeine is a diuretic, research has shown that drinking coffee or other caffeinated beverages has the same effect as water, especially if you are a regular caffeine drinker.

Kelly Hindman, a researcher in kidney function and fluid retention at the University of Alabama, said, “If you drink caffeine in large quantities after a long hiatus, you may experience some dehydration, but on the other hand, we have to know that caffeine does not cause dehydration.”

Don’t be afraid of salty foods

“We’ve probably heard that salty foods cause dehydration, but that’s not entirely true. The body tries to maintain the salt balance in the body through certain hormones, including the diuretic hormone, or what is known as ADH.

While Dr. Hugh Butler explains, “When you consume an amount of salty food at once, the brain will secrete the hormone ADH, which makes the kidneys retain water, and thus prevents us from urinating excess fluid. The hormone is also associated with the feeling of thirst, and makes us feel that we need more fluids. Consuming a lot of salty foods is not a problem if you ignore all the signs of thirst.”

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Therefore, if you are looking for salty and moist foods, you can eat olives and pickles, which are acceptable options, and they are not consumed in large quantities. Soups with watery broth can also help get hydrated.

On the other hand, Hindman notes, “Alcohol is dehydrating, so when you drink it, the kidneys won’t store it and absorb fluids, so be sure to avoid or limit your drinking.”

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