At present, it’s understandable that we may crave comfort food and drinks. The quick fix from salt and sugar loaded food and drink is undeniable, so even while you’re attempting to stay better hydrated, you may be ingesting dehydrating substances without even realising it.

Sodium is a big culprit

When you eat salty foods, your cells tell your brain that you’re thirsty. Examples of foods high in salt are fast foods, potato crisps, tinned foods, deli meats and condiments like tomato ketchup, brown sauce and sweet chilli sauce.

Sugary drinks also contribute

Much like salty foods, sugary drinks also tell your brain that you’re thirsty. Try to avoid these – fizzy, energy and sports drinks as well as over sugared coffees and cocktails.

Instead of eating and drinking these dehydration-inducing foods and beverages, drink more water and add these top superfoods to your diet for optimal health and antioxidant levels.


Yielding antioxidants, vitamin C and anti-inflammatory properties, a handful of these berries daily can do wonders.

Fatty fish

Fatty fish with omega-3s include salmon, herring, sardines, and mackerel. Make sure that you only buy fish off the endangered list. A good guide to which are sustainable and safe fish to buy can be found here.


This does not mean using enough soy sauce to turn your sushi rice another colour. Soy sauce has a high sodium content. Clean and simple soy is recommended. Soy in this category includes tofu, soymilk and edamame. For the curious, edamame are green soybeans boiled or steamed in their pods.


There are a variety of great options for getting more fibre in your body:

  1. Beans. Think three-bean salad, bean burritos, chilli, and soup.
  2. Whole grains. That means whole-wheat bread, pasta.
  3. Brown rice. White rice doesn’t offer much fibre.
  4. Popcorn. It’s a great source of fibre.
  5. Nuts. Almonds, pecans, and walnuts have more fibre than other nuts.
  6. Baked potato with skin. The skin’s important here.
  7. Berries. All those seeds, plus the skin, give great fibre to any berry.
  8. Bran cereal. Actually, any cereal that has 5 grams of fibre or more in a serving counts as high fibre.
  9. Oatmeal. Whether its microwaved or stove-cooked, oatmeal is good fibre.
  10. Vegetables. The crunchier, the better.

With all this talk about salt, it’s quite likely you’re now thirsty, so to help, here are a few thirst-quenching alternatives that are not only good for you, but will tamp down on your dehydration quickly:


The antioxidant powers of tea are present in both black and green tea. Moreover, you’re drinking water when you drink tea, minus all the sugar you would be when consuming fizzy drinks.


The health-conscious tend to stay away from dairy products for fear that they contain fat, but calcium is necessary for the body. If you’d rather not consume cheese and milk, take a calcium supplement.


As always, the simplest and quickest route to maintain good hydration is to drink water more. To gauge how much water you should drink, refer to AquAid’s handy guide to start you off.

*updated from a blog post Jan 2013