Have you ever noticed that it is 11 am, and you haven’t touched the hydro flask that you took pains to fill up with ice and water before you left for work?
You are not alone. It takes commitment and consistency to drink enough water throughout the day. Our bodies are composed of up to 60% water, which is why it’s crucial to make hydration a priority.
Water is a vital key to our overall health and wellness. It helps with a wide variety of body processes including body temperature regulation, organ function, preventing infection, assisting nutrient delivery to our cells, and weight loss/maintenance. Adequate hydration helps to improve our sleep quality, mood, and cognition.
What fluids should I be drinking to stay hydrated?
Water is the best beverage to drink to stay hydrated. Foods like fruits and vegetables contain high amounts of water. Caffeinated beverages including tea and coffee can contribute to dehydration as they act as diuretics and promote frequent urination. Sports drinks and juices are another form of hydration but are oftentimes loaded with sugar and extra calories. If you need energy or electrolytes, be mindful and only drink these in moderation. Look for Emergen-C or other electrolyte replenishing packets that are low in sugar and calories after a workout to help restore your hydration balance.
How much water should you drink?
Fluid needs vary from person to person. A good estimation of fluid needs is to multiply 30-35mL of fluid per kilogram of body weight. An easy ‘no math required’ estimate is 1.5 to 2 liters of water per day.
Note: Kilograms are determined by dividing your weight in pounds by 2.2
How do you monitor hydration status?
Many people believe that thirst is the best indicator for when the body needs to hydrate, but this is a sign that the body is already dehydrated. A simple indicator to determine hydration status is urine color. If your urine is clear or lemonade-colored first thing in the morning, then your body is properly hydrated. If you notice that your urine is darker in color than lemonade, then you are dehydrated.
Ideas to consume more water:
Cucumber or other fruits / herbs added to water (pineapple, strawberries, watermelon, mint, etc.)
No sugar-added Coconut water
Tips to creating new habits are small steps implemented daily. Phone alarm reminders. Water bottles with phrases and times of day guides to remind you to drink. Pouring your favorite Perrier flavor into a pretty glass with ice and a lime twist, to help your brain register it as a treat.
Pretty soon you’ll be reaching for your hydro flask every thirty minutes, and your entire system will thank you for it.