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How to stay hydrated in summer?

With hot summer days on the door, it’s important that we adults and kids keep a good eye on our hydration. Whether you are staying indoor or outdoor, avoiding dehydration or the loss of fluids and electrolytes from the body is very important not to feel dizzy, lightheaded, tired or some mouth/lips/eyes dryness. Another dehydration sign is urine’s color and quantity: amount will be smaller, and color will be darker than usual. A severe dehydration with a loss of fluids equivalent to more than 10% of our body weight will require some urgent hospitalization. Nevertheless, we’ve got your back! Here are some simple tips to make sure that you and your whole family stay well hydrated during this summer:

1. Drink water regularly. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends drinking 2-3 liters of water per day for adults (including breastfeeding women) and 4 cups of water per day for babies (1-3 years old). This can sound like a lot of water, but here is a simple breakdown for the day that can help: when you wake up drink 1-2 cups of water before having your tea/coffee (your are probably a bit dehydrated as you did not drink during your 6-8 hours sleep); then before each meal, drink a glass of water (this will also help you feel more full and better regulate your hunger); drink a glass water before/after your coffee/tea; drink your last glasses of water before going to bed. If you are not a big fan of the plain water taste you can cut some slices of your favorite fruit (lemon, raspberry, etc.) into your water glass. This will give a nice twist to the normal water taste. You can also download an application on your phone to track the number of water cups you drink every day.

2. Eat some water-rich fruits and vegetables every day (preferably during each meal). There are a lot of water-rich fruits/vegetables and many of them are affordable. Some common examples are: watermelon, tomatoes, cucumber, lettuce, zucchini, peaches, grapefruits, cantaloupe and strawberries.

3. Have some soup every day. The main ingredient of soups is water. A big soup bowl per day definitely has a lot of health benefits (not only for a better hydration). Soups can be served hot or cold not necessarily hot (in case the concept of hot soup in summer bothers you).

4. Avoid/decrease your intake of coffee and tea and other caffeine content. Caffeine is a diuretic, which means it will let you go at the bathroom more often, so you will be losing more water/electrolytes through urination compared to if you do not take any caffeine.

5. Take some cool showers/baths. This will not help you get hydrated directly, yet it will help you sweat less. In fact, you can lose water/electrolytes through heavy sweating (after some physical exercise for example).

Adopting some simple hydration habits might sound easy but is very important to stay in good health. A good hydration will also help you lose the extra kilograms you want, stay in a good shape and have a nice skin glow.

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Dr. Reem Khalaf Bachelor of Pharmacy and Biotechnology (German University in Cairo) instagram account : babychef_eg
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