Staying Hydrated During the Summer

Staying Hydrated This Summer

With summer quickly approaching, our days are heating up. Even though the spring season of most sports is coming to an end, many children and adults find summer leagues to join or week-long camps to participate in through local Parks & Recreation departments. There is never a shortage of fun and interesting ways to stay active year-round, especially with the great weather we experience here in Florida!

This time of year with rising temperatures and humidity, along with activities like sports and hanging out at the beach, it is especially important to remember to hydrate! We don’t realize how easily and how quickly we can become dehydrated. Most of us remember to drink water while we are being active because the activity itself makes us thirsty. Are we drinking enough during those active times? What about times when we are less active? If we are just hanging out in the backyard or at the beach, do we need to drink as much?

According to “The Harvard Health Letter,” a healthy person needs thirty to fifty ounces of fluid per day.  You may think that you can knock that out first thing in the morning so that you don’t have to think about your fluid intake the remainder of the day.  In truth, it is better for your body if you drink throughout the day, not all at once.  You can also obtain fluid through certain foods like salad or fruits such as watermelon or applesauce.

Staying hydrated helps your body in a variety of ways. It helps your heart function easily without having to strain and helps your muscles work more efficiently. This is good news for all of us and especially for those who are very active. It is important to remember that some people will require more fluid than others to stay hydrated.  For example, if you happen to perspire (sweat) heavily when active, you will require more fluids to replace the amount of fluids your body is losing than someone who barely perspires. Additionally, certain health conditions and certain medications make it easier to dehydrate requiring the person to drink more fluids than the average individual.

Do you have to drink only water?  No, you can drink other fluids.  However, there is truly no substitute for what nature has already provided for us.  Water is best, period.  But, drinking only water can get boring.  You can add lemon or lime juice to your water to give it a little flavor.  Believe it or not, adding a couple cucumber slices gives water a really refreshing flavor too!  Avoid drinks with lots of added sugars or caffeine.  Sugary drinks may give you some hydration, but they aren’t good for your overall health and provide unhealthy calories.  Caffeinated drinks can cause you to urinate more frequently which leads to further dehydration, defeating the purpose of drinking them in the first place!

Lastly, we want you to remember that drinking fluids PRIOR to being out in the sun or engaging in any activity is key to staying hydrated.  If you try to hydrate during or after being in the sun or being active, you are actually making your body “play catch-up,” which is requiring it to work harder.

Dr. Diego Velarde of Advanced Surgical and Weight Loss Institute has spent years helping patients maintain their health and get it to where it needs to be.  If you are struggling with your weight, call Dr. Velarde today.  He can work out a plan that is best for you, up to and including a variety of weight loss surgeries in Melbourne, FL.  Dr. Velarde and our incredible staff care about your overall health, even something as simple as staying hydrated, so give us a call today!