Bump Up Your H2O: Staying Hydrated in the Summer Heat



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Think and Drink: Preventing Dehydration

Summertime is a great time to get outside and enjoy an outdoor barbecue, a baseball game, a parade, or sightseeing.

However, when it is hot and humid, everyone’s risk of dehydration increases. So, it’s time to think and drink water.

That water can come from various foods and beverages besides water itself. Juicy fruits and vegetables, like tomatoes, watermelon, or cantaloupe, have lots of fluid. Milk and juice can take the place of water.

Causes of Thirst

When it’s hot, the elderly and children are particularly at risk for dehydration because of their low body weight. The elderly are most likely to skip meals and not drink enough water.

Furthermore, seniors are more likely to be on medications that make them thirstier or have health issues like diabetes, renal disease, or heart disease that make them more susceptible to dehydration.

How much water should you drink? On the day of your outing, drink one to three cups of water before you go out in the heat.

Men should drink 13 cups of water each day, and women should drink 9 cups of water each day, according to the Institute of Medicine quoted on the website of the Mayo Clinic.

Here are some helpful think and drink tips:

  1. Bring a water bottle or a cooler with water in it so you can take water breaks while outdoors. Get into the habit of carrying a water bottle in the car; you never know when you might need it.
  2. If plain water gets boring, check out those flavored water drinks or the flavoring packages you put into your water.

    Choose ones that don’t have a lot of extra sugar in them. Don’t think that a cold beer or a cola drink will take the place of the water you should be drinking.

    Caffeine in cold drinks, coffee, and alcohol has a diuretic effect, which means that these drinks can cause your body to lose fluids by urinating more. Water is what your body needs when you are out in the heat.
  3. Wear cool, loose clothing. Wear a hat or cover up with an umbrella. Bring a damp cloth with you to cool your face.
  4. Stay in the shade for a break, or go to an air-conditioned spot inside or in your car to sit in the air conditioning for a while.

Danger Signs to Watch For

Symptoms of dehydration can worsen and cause more severe problems if you don’t take care of them soon.

  • Dizziness, headache, darkened urine, confusion, and weakness are serious symptoms and indicate that emergency medical services should be contacted immediately.
  • Low blood pressure and rapid pulse indicate that intravenous fluids may be needed.

In conclusion

We all must be mindful of our health, especially during summertime!

To ensure we keep hydrated and in good condition, drinking lots of water and eating hydrating food is indispensable.

Severe dehydration can come swiftly given hot temperatures and high humidity, which is why it is important to be aware of the warning signs and take preventative measures.

Carrying a water bottle with you, wearing comfortable clothes, and seeking out the shade are easy steps to ensure hydration and make the most of this special season.

Don’t forget to listen to your body – if you experience acute symptoms, seek medical attention right away.