By Melissa Schuster MS RDN CDN IFNCP, owner of Schuster Nutrition, PLLC.

As the temperatures stay high in NYC, staying hydrated becomes even more essential for our health and well-being. Hydration supports digestion, regulates body temperature, and ensures mental clarity – all things we need to keep us going in our day-to-day lives. For many of us, though, staying hydrated is challenging, so let’s chat about why it’s important, the challenges we face, and tips and tricks to get enough water in this heat.

Why Hydration Matters

Our bodies are made up of over 60% water. We need adequate hydration for almost all bodily functions, including digestion and breaking down food and nutrients; regulating body temperature; carrying nutrients and oxygen to cells in our body; clearing our body of toxins; keeping our organs, joints, and muscles working; and improving mood, memory and cognition. Dehydration can cause thirst, fatigue, dizziness, headaches, poor concentration, low energy, constipation and more.

Challenges of Summer Hydration

When it’s hot outside, our bodies perspire to try to cool down, causing us to lose water more rapidly. Exercising outside or being in the sun can also use up our water stores. If you’re feeling thirst, dry mouth, dizziness or rapid heartbeat, these are all signs you could be dehydrated. We may feel lethargic or low energy in the heat, making it harder to feel motivated to reach for a water bottle. This makes it all the more important to prioritize hydration during the summer months.

How Much Water Do I Need

I generally recommend 64+ ounces (2+ liters) for women and 100+ ounces (3+ liters) for men, although individual needs vary greatly based on sex, age, illness, exercise, etc. Another way to estimate your water needs is to take your weight in pounds and divide it by 2 to get the number of ounces (e.g., 150 pounds divided by 2 would be ~75 ounces of water). But, the best way to determine adequate hydration is how you feel – how is your thirst? Your energy? Are you urinating frequently and is it a pale yellow (vs. dark)? Also keep in mind that fruits, vegetables and broths can be hydrating, so you may be getting additional hydration outside of your water cup!

Tips and Tricks for Staying Hydrated

  1. Drink Water Regularly: Take sips of water throughout the day, rather than waiting until you’re parched with thirst. You can try downloading a water tracking app like Plant Nanny or Water Reminder to help remind you to drink water.
  2. Eat Hydrating Foods: Remember that hydrating foods like cucumber, watermelon and berries can help with hydration. These are also great additions to flavor your water!
  3. Limit Dehydrating Beverages: Limit caffeine and alcohol, which can contribute to dehydration.
  4. Carry a Water Bottle: Keep a reusable water bottle with you. Bonus if it has a straw, is see-through so you can track how much you have left, or has motivational sayings or time markers as a visual reminder to drink water.
  5. Get Creative: Experiment with herbal teas or iced teas, infused waters, or homemade electrolyte drinks (download 30 hydration recipes right here!).

30 Refreshing Hydration Recipes

I’ve curated 30 refreshing hydration recipes just for you – you can download them here!

Conclusion

As we make our way through the summer heat, hydration becomes a priority to feeling our best and optimizing our health. Try adding these hydration tips and a new hydration recipe into your daily routine to stay energized, refreshed, and ready to tackle summer!

For more individualized and customized nutrition support, learn more about the 6-Week 1:1 Concierge Nutrition Bootcamp Programs with Melissa Schuster, MS RDN CDN IFNCP. https://schusternutrition.com/bootcamp

DISCLAIMER: The information contained in this post is not, and should not be construed as, medical advice. It is provided for informational purposes only. Each individual’s situation, nutritional needs and medical situation are different, and the information contained in this post may not be appropriate for your personal situation. Always check with your own physician or medical professional before implementing any change to your lifestyle, food intake, exercise regimen or medical treatment.

© 2024 Schuster Nutrition, PLLC

 

 

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