Do you ever feel unexplainably achy or tired after a long hot day?

You may go by the standard signs of dehydration – increased thirst and variations in the color of your urine. But symptoms of dehydration also include feeling tired, sleepy, headaches, dizziness, mood swings, brain fog, muscle cramps, and sugar cravings.

If you’ve been slacking on your water intake, it’s time be extra proactive over the next few days as summer temps rocket. Everyone will need more water and fluids! On top of upping your water game, our experts also want you to mind the electrolytes and salts, which get depleted through sweat, urination, and bowel movements.

While drinking enough fluids seems pretty intuitive, up to 75% of Americans may be chronically dehydrated. [1] Our Functional Medicine & Clinical Nutrition team is here with some surprisingly helpful hydration hacks to help you stay cool and prevent dehydration.

Don’t go by thirst alone. 

When you are dehydrated, you sometimes stop being thirsty. Don’t let your lack of thirst fool you into thinking you can skip the H2O.

Drink up, but pace yourself.

Your body cannot have more than 1 quart of water per hour. Avoid the need to chug it down by pacing yourself and drinking consistently throughout your day. Keeping a water bottle on deck is the way to go.

Rise & Hydrate!

Having 1-2  glasses in the morning after you wake up can help fire up your brain and metabolism.

(Did you know: about 3/4 of your brain  is composed of water? When you are dehydrated your brain actually shrinks in volume which impacts function and mood!)

Plan Ahead

Dr. Blake Butler, DC, also suggests consuming plenty of water and electrolytes before you plan to exercise.

Be sure to hydrate an hour before activity, during activity, and following activity to prevent dehydration. Also, make sure to replenish sodium to prevent hyponatremia (low sodium) when increasing water intake.

Chill out, but not too chilly!

Cold water can shock the system, as Sue Smith, MS, LDN, reminds us, and room temperature water may be easier for your stomach to absorb.

Savor the flavor

Water doesn’t have to be basic. Add some lemon or lime juice, fresh mint, cucumber, berries, or ginger.

Amp it up

Try adding a super greens packet for extra antioxidants and essential minerals. Dr Ryan Dorough, DC, likes to add a pinch of Himalayan salt which  has over 84 trace minerals to help re-nourish your body!

 

If anything is stopping you from enjoying the summer weather, we’re here to help. Our team of Functional Medicine experts can take a look at the root cause of your health concerns to get you back to feeling your best.

[1] Survey of 3003 Americans, Nutrition Information Center, New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center (April 14, 1998).

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