Summer’s steamy days can bring on a thirst for adventure, relaxation and a break from the daily routine. But while you’re out having fun, don’t forget that hot, humid weather means your body is thirsty, too.
Staying hydrated is critical for good health. In fact, not drinking enough can lead to dehydration, which can rear its ugly head in the way of headaches, fatigue, skin problems, muscle cramps, low blood pressure and a rapid heart rate, according to the National Institutes of Health. Drinking water is one essential way to make sure you’re getting enough fluids. But in the summer, the sky is the limit with creative ways to stay hydrated. Here are some ideas:
Fill a pitcher with water and ice, then add slices of citrus like oranges, lemons and limes for a refreshing treat. For an effervescent lift, try sparkling water.
Ice-cold fruit like watermelon is refreshing on a hot summer day and is also loaded with vitamin C and vitamin A. Its high-water content means that every one-cup serving contains more than a half cup of water. Other fruits with high-water contents include strawberries, cantaloupe, peaches and oranges.
Who knew that a crisp salad not only adds a welcome light bite on a steamy day, but also helps keep you hydrated? Salad staples like lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers and bell peppers all have high water content.
Freeze strawberries, blueberries and grapes alone or in ice cube trays. Use them to chill sparkling water, spring water or wine and jazz up your refreshments at your next summer party. Frozen grapes also make a cool, healthy snack.
Fill popsicle molds with your favorite 100-percent fruit juice to make a healthy snack that will not make you feel guilty for indulging in a sweet treat.
Summer is the perfect time to enjoy a fresh fruit smoothie tailor made to your tastes. Start with your favorite frozen fruit – anything from strawberries to pineapple to mango – then throw in what you like. Add yogurt, banana slices, milk, juice, or whatever pleases your palate. For an icy twist, pour smoothies into a popsicle mold for a frozen treat.
Hydrate with exercise
If you are active on a hot summer day, remember to drink plenty of water before, during and after you exercise, even if you don’t feel thirsty. Invest in a fun, insulated water bottle that will keep your drinks cold and reflect your unique personality.
If you experience signs of dehydration or heat exhaustion, sip water or suck on ice cubes, move to the shade or indoors, douse yourself with cold water and apply cold, wet cloths to the neck, groin and armpits, according to the American Heart Association.
Take care to stay properly hydrated to best enjoy the long, lazy days of summer, whether you’re into sports, family outings or just relaxing.
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual. Ameris Bank does not endorse nor is affiliated with the companies listed in this article.