Here are some quick and easy tips on how to stave off dehydration (and they don’t all involve drinks) –
- Tea – A recent UK study found drinking up to four mugs of black tea with milk a day is just as hydrating as drinking the same quantity of water. Bear in mind though, that the caffeine in tea starts acting as a diuretic (increases fluid loss by causing you to pass more urine) when you exceed around five cups a day, so go easy or sip water in between your mugs of tea.
- Coconut water – Fresh coconut water is naturally isotonic, with a 330ml serving containing more potassium than two bananas plus five other naturally occurring electrolytes. It has one-fifth of the sugar found in fruit juice, plus a little fibre.
- Cucumbers – No matter how you slice ‘em and dice ‘em, cucumbers keep cool at the number one spot on the list of water-logged fruits and vegetables. At 96 percent water, cucumbers have no saturated fat or cholesterol, and are very high in vitamin K, vitamin B6 and iron. Stack slices with watermelon and you’ve a pretty, tasty and water filled snack.
- Watermelon – In the world of thirst quenchers, watermelon weighs in as a major contender. Based on its name, it’s no surprise this fruit is made up of 92 percent water! But its salt, calcium and magnesium is what makes it ideal for rehydration, according to a 2009 study at the University of Aberdeen’s Medical School.
- Lettuce – Iceberg lettuce may be 96 percent water, but it’s not known for much else in the nutrition department. Richer salad greens and sandwich toppers including butterhead, romaine and spinach are more well-rounded choices and still up your hydration.
- Make your own ice lollies for a fluid-rich treat. Puree fruit or use no-sugar-added fruit juice and pour into freezer moulds.
- Make sure water is easily accessible for little ones. If they can’t reach the sink or the water tap in your fridge, set up an easy-to-use water dispenser and a few cups in a place where they can reach it.
- Create a reminder system for drinking water. This could be a chart on the fruidge that kids can mark each time they have a serving of water, or, if you’re out and about, a timer set on your phone to remind the family that it’s time to take a drink.
- The same as with the grown-ups (that’s you, that is), keeping hydrated doesn’t have to be water – many fruits and vegetables have a very high water content. Offer watermelon, strawberries, broccoli, celery, cucumbers and other watery fruits and veggies for snacks.