How To Stay Hydrated

How To Stay Hydrated
These five letters can be the difference between life and death. W-A-T-E-R! Without it, humans can only survive for a couple of DAYS... We become dehydrated easier than we think, and it can be detrimental. We are made up of about 60% water. Our bodies, minds and nearly every cell requires it to live. Hydration is the status where your body has sufficient amounts of water to sustain its metabolic activities and physiological functions. Hydration and adequate amounts of water in the body plays an extensive role in our daily lives, without us really realizing it or even knowing a lot about it. Pour yourself a refreshing glass of water, sit back and dive into the pool of knowledge on HYDRATION and WATER!

Let's take a few moments to dig a little deeper into this essential ingredient.

Benefits of Hydration

  • Sport performance can improve. Hydration is highly associated to improve sport results especially in moderate effort and aerobic endurance exercises  - e.g. running.
  • Regulate body temperature
  • Cognitive Function and mood: Mild levels of dehydration can produce disruptions in mood and cognitive functioning. Hydration can directly improve your mood, and it may also affect concentration and memory.  This affects everyone: From children to the elderly! Take special care of hydration if you live in a hot, humid environment, or do regular vigorous exercises. 
  • Chronic Disease & Illness: Prevent and manage exercise-induced asthma, constipation and kidney stones.  For diabetics, staying well hydrated can prevent sudden surges in blood sugar (but please, still choose safe, low GI foods as directed by your doctor and dietitian!). 
    • It may assist to prevent recurrent bladder infections, possibly plays a role in preventing heart disease and hypertension; and since your saliva production decreases with dehydration it may lead to dental problems.

How Much water should you drink?

On average, the general male population requires about 3700ml water and adult females 2700ml. Before you go chug on a few litres, it is important to note that water comes from both food and fluid sources. In a study done in 2010, around   (it may be even higher in countries where people eat high amounts of fruit and vegetables such as through Europe and especially those following a Mediterranean diet and lifestyle). Fruits and vegetables have some of the highest water content of all food groups. The rest can be consumed via different beverages and clean, plain water.
How To Stay Hydrated

Which Foods are High in Water? 

  • Milk (90-99% water content)
  • Strawberries; Watermelon; Apples; grapes and lots of other fruit (on average 80% water content)
  • Leafy, green vegetables (cabbage, spinach); broccoli; cucumber and lots of other vegetables (on average 80% water content)
  • Avocado, cottage cheese (around 80% water content)
  • Legumes: beans, lentils, peas etc. (on average 60% water content). 

How to Stay Healthy & Hydrated

  • Water, water, water... Obviously! Make it easier for yourself:
    • Always keep a bottle on hand close to you. If it's there, it will be easier to drink more!
    • Mark your bottle and make sure you drink water continuously throughout the day. Mark on the bottle where you should be at 8am? 11am? 1pm? 3pm? 5pm? bed time? To make sure you have regular sips of water. 
    • Avoid sugary drinks (like sodas), alcohol or too many caffeinated drinks. 
  • Choose the "right" foods as mentioned above to make sure you are getting lots of water by EATING your water. Choose cantaloupes, cucumber etc.  
  • Monitor your losses. If you sweat a lot, live/exercise in warm conditions or if you're doing lots of exercise: Extra intake is necessary! Don't wait for thirst before you replenish your losses. 
How To Stay Hydrated

Why not quickly watch our video on HYDRATION to get the facts in a 3 minute summary? Click below to view this video!

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