Ah summer, the time of year when we frantically try to get ready for the beach, working out and dieting, as if enforcing healthy habits three days prior to our vacation will make a drastic difference in our appearance. Or…it’s also the time of year when people who continuously live a healthy lifestyle show off on the beach, or while running, or at the grocery store, or even at the damn ice cream shop on the corner.
Whether you’re a full-time go get ‘em type of healthy person, or an I’m starting tomorrow type of individual, it is important to remember that while diet and exercise are key components of a healthy lifestyle, staying hydrated is vital for everyone.
Water is the most essential and forgotten nutrient. While it may not be ideal, especially if you’re at the ice cream shop on the corner getting pissed at the healthy people, you can last quite some time without food. However, you can only survive days without water.
Water carries heat away from your internal organs. The heat travels through your bloodstream to your skin, causing you to sweat. The evaporating sweat allows you to cool off and maintain a safe body temperature. It is important to balance your daily water intake with losses for optimal functioning and health.
Keeping in mind that everyone’s fluid needs are different, based on sweat rates, environmental temperatures, clothing, humidity, etc., here are a few tips on how to stay hydrated as the summer heat sets in:
1. If you’re thirsty…drink water.
2. Avoid alcohol, even if a cold beer sounds good after being out in the sun all day.
3. If your urine is dark, smelly, or cloudy…drink water.
4. Drink water before, during and after low-to-moderate activity.
5. Make carrying water with you a habit. If you’re at work, keep a bottle on your desk, refilling often.
6. Add fluid-filled foods to your diet, such as watermelon, cucumbers, celery, lettuce, and strawberries, just to name a few.
7. Add a pinch of salt to your water if you find, or anticipate, yourself to be perspiring excessively.
8. On a normal day, with minimum to no activities, we recommend you drink half your body weight in ounces of water. For example, if you weigh 130 pounds, you should drink 65 ounces of water per day.
These simple steps will help keep you hydrated, however, it is important to remain mindful of dehydration symptoms, such as, but not limited to: headaches, fatigue, dizziness and nausea.
At our Indianapolis chiropractic clinic, we recommend investing in a reverse osmosis system, which is the purest form of drinking water and will also eliminate the waste of plastic bottles. So, pour yourself a nice cold glass of water and enjoy your summer!
About Integrated Health Solutions
Dr. Charbel Harb is a licensed chiropractic physician and the Medical Director of Integrated Health Solutions. Our core belief is that each patient who walks through the doors is a person, not just a medical record or chart. Our greatest pleasure is bringing joy to our patients and helping them to fully embrace life, allowing them to enjoy each day: active, healthy and pain free.