by Zach Shivers, Dietetic Intern
Plain water is the best choice for hydrating yourself. Listening to your body cues is important. Be mindful to drink water when you are thirsty; if you are thirsty you are already dehydrated. In order to combat this, carry around a refillable water bottle wherever you go and drink water frequently throughout the day.
Symptoms of dehydration include:
- Dry mouth
- Skin tenting
If you are tired of just plain water, change it up by adding ice, fruit, mint or a flavoring agent such as Crystal Light. Most people need 8 to 10 cups of water per day, which is 64 ounces or 2 liters. Some water bottles include a tracker for how many times you have refilled them.
All fluids count toward your hydration goal. Other hydrating sources include iced tea, sparkling water, milk, 100% fruit juice, popsicles and gelatin. All fruits and vegetables contain water, which further helps to keep you hydrated, so eat lots of fruits and veggies!
One method of quickly assessing your hydration is to check the color of your urine; light yellow to clear means you are hydrated. If your urine is darker than light yellow, this means you should drink more water. Another method of assessing your hydration is to weigh yourself before and immediately after physical activity. A good rule of thumb is that for every pound you lose, drink at least 2 cups of water
Lastly, remember to keep your water on ICE – In-Sight, Convenient and Everywhere!