“If you’re thirsty, you’re already dehydrated.” This nugget of knowledge came from my swim coach when he explained to us the importance of staying hydrated at a meet. Coach was on the right track, but not 100 percent correct. Thirst is a good indicator that you should grab a drink, but doesn’t necessarily mean you’re dehydrated.
Trying to figure out when and how much water you need to drink before, during, and after a workout isn’t as easy as it may seem. Our friends at Shape Magazine are trying to make sense of it by asking: how much should we drink and when?
Less than one-third of kids and teens meet the daily recommended daily water intake for their age group. To improve that statistic, the USDA issued a mandate to go into effect at the beginning of the 2011-2012 school year stating the schools participating in the National School Lunch Program must provide free drinking water to students.
Researchers from the University of Michigan and University of Illinois have found the majority of schools have met the mandate and provide water to their students during lunch. But the real trick is getting students to actually drink more water.
The New Year’s celebration is one of the biggest in the world. For many, the revelry involves alcohol, and lots of it. But when a new day (and year) dawns, party goers often feel the aftereffects of their festivities in the form of a nasty hangover.
If this is your predicament, don’t reach for greasy foods, caffeine, or medications, which can worsen the effects of alcohol on your body. Use these natural remedies instead for a fast and healthy hangover recovery.
One of the most tried-and-true, widely recognized remedies for too much alcohol is to drink lots of water. Many hangover remedies sound strange and follow bad logic, and will probably not do any good, but this simple tip makes sense. Water will dilute the alcohol in your body, minimize alcohol’s dehydrating effect on your body, and flush out toxins. Try to stay hydrated before, during, and after drinking and its negative effects will diminish considerably.
2. Fruit and fruit juice
Once you’re properly hydrated, start replenishing the vitamins you’ve lost and get your blood sugar back to normal with a tall glass of juice. Orange or tomato juice will replenish lost vitamins and contain natural sugars to help your body metabolize alcohol faster. Bananas are great for restoring depleted potassium levels associated with overindulging, and they have magnesium, beneficial for headaches. If you don’t have any fruit juice, down a Gatorade or other electrolyte-containing sports drink.
Ginger has been used for centuries as an aid for motion sickness, nausea, and vomiting. Brew some ginger root tea for soothing relief, or pop open a ginger ale for a quick fix. (more…)
Did you know it matters if you drink cold water versus warm water? It seems like there are always tips and tricks when it comes to losing weight. One of the tips I’ve heard is to drink water before you eat and there are a few proven reasons on why this is true. The first reason is that sometimes when your body is dehydrated it confuses the signal of being thirsty for hunger. The signal is sent to your brain and as a result you feel like eating. If it’s actually because you’re dehydrated, drinking a glass of water will help alleviate the urge to eat something.
The second reason to drink water before you eat a meal is because it will make you feel more full. You may have heard this already but do you know whether you should drink cold or warm water? If you are wanting to feel full for longer, you will want to drink room temperature or warm water. Warm water tends to stay in the stomach longer than cold water. The reason for this is because when you drink cold water, it has to leave the stomach faster so your body can heat it up quickly. So when choosing between the two, go for warm water.
Another trick I’ve heard over the years is that drinking ice cold water makes your body burn more calories. Is this fact or fiction? (more…)
By Michelle Schoffro Cook for Care2.com
We hear about importance of drinking enough water constantly. On the flip side, there has been a growing trend in the media lately that the commonly recommended eight cups of water daily is a myth, which is technically accurate, but not the whole story. Whether you need eight cups of water daily, or four or ten, most people are not getting the message that whatever their particular water needs are, they aren’t meeting them.
And even dietitians, nutritionists, and medical professionals are contributing to the problem by informing people that they get enough water in their diet in the form of fruits and vegetables. That might be true for some people, but after assessing the diets of countless people, I assure you that isn’t the case for most people.
Plus, have you ever noticed that when you throw vegetables in a pan and turn on the heat you’ll see liquid in the pan soon afterward, and then shortly after that you’ll see steam rising from them? That’s because you’re literally cooking the water out of the vegetables.
We’ve all heard the rule that we should drink eight, 8-ounce glasses of water each day to stay properly hydrated and healthy. But where did this rule come from? What is the science and research behind the recommendation? Do you need to drink more water if you work out a lot? And what about the foods, like soup and grapefruit, that have a lot of water in them? Do they count towards your daily water-total?
A new commentary in the British Medical Journal, where a doctor called the recommendation to drink six to eight glasses of water a day, “thoroughly debunked nonsense,” is causing many to question what had been considered hydration-law. To clear this whole water-recommendation thing up, we talked with some experts about hydration to get the real deal on how much you really need to drink.
Do I Need to Drink Eight Glasses of Water a Day?
Basically, there is no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to optimal hydration, says Dr. Josh Wagner, owner of The Life House on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, where he practices chiropractic and sports medicine.
“Eight cups of water per day is the classic recommendation for keeping hydrated, but how could, say, a 105-pound woman need to consume the same amount of water as a 240-pound man?” Dr. Wagner asks. “I usually advise my patients to drink at least half their body weight in ounces of water per day, and to add even more water if they tend to enjoy caffeinated beverages or alcohol or if they have other health concerns, such as diabetes. You’ve heard it before, but water makes up such a large percentage of our bodies and is one of the most important parts of a healthy lifestyle.”
With this week’s record breaking heat, which has been blamed for five deaths in Tennessee, Maryland and Wisconsin, some experts predict an unusually hot summer for the United States.
According to MSNBC.com, a new study from Stanford University predicts that global climate change will lead permanently to unusually hot summers by the middle of the century. So, as the summers heat up, what can you do to stay cool and keep hydrated?
Lather Up: With excessive heat often comes excessive sunshine and no matter how much time you plan to spend outside, sun safety is critical for preventing skin cancer. Use sunscreen with an SPF30 or higher daily for protection and if you’re planning on spending the day outdoors, up the ante to an SPF45 or higher.
I ran my first marathon in the spring of 2007. There were medic tents located every few miles along the course. That made perfect sense to me however, I was utterly confused about the continuous offers of Vaseline on a stick. The medics had large tongue depressors with heaping dollops of petroleum jelly on the ends. As I passed the tents they held them out hollering, “Vaseline? Vaseline?”
My best guess was that runners must like to use Vaseline for lip balm to keep their lips from getting dry.
Somewhere around mile 13 all my curiosity was cured. I was passing yet another tent and ignoring the offer for jelly on a stick when I heard thundering steps behind me and a primal scream rang out, “VASELINE!!!!”
The male runner was doing some sort of bow-legged hop as he quickly grabbed the aid and proceeded to slather it all over his nether region.
All questions were then answered and I got my first glimpse into a dirtier side of running.
Playing sports has a multitude of benefits for kids. Beyond the understood exercise, children learn time management, how to get along with other players, and most importantly, the necessity of teamwork. One of the most important, and least emphasized, skills that children will learn while playing sports is the necessity of proper nutrition and how it relates to both endurance and results.
Have you heard the saying, “You only get out of it what you put into it?” That saying seems tailor made for sports. As adults, we know the importance of fueling ourselves correctly, being certain to be adequately hydrated and well rested. These lessons are not usually at the forefront of a coach’s mind, however, and when you spend time ferrying your kids back and forth, it can often slip to the bottom of your priority list as well. After all, you’ve got to remember where the practice has been scheduled, remember to get the kids there on time AND the gear – something’s bound to slip your mind.
Arguably the most important aspect of the children/sports/nutrition triangle, and the one easiest to overlook, is hydration. Sure, we send our kids to practice and games with a water bottle – but do we make sure that they drink it all? And is the beverage that we’ve given them the best choice? How many of us have seen the swarm of players at the end of a game, grabbing a sugar sweetened drink pouch and thought to yourself, “Is that really the best beverage choice for a player who has just run for an hour?” Let’s take a look at hydration as it relates to the child or teen athlete.
Debra Roby is certified as a Personal Trainer through NASM. She trains private clients in the SF Bay area and is developing an online coaching business. She blogs at Weight for Deb.
When we get mildly dehydrated – simply missing one to three glasses of water throughout the day- the symptoms are often weight gain, confusion and a craving for sweets. Because we do not recognize these clues as “my body is thirsty”, we go about addressing these symptoms incorrectly. Often our “cures” -coffee or soda, salty or sweet snacks or even a nap- make the condition slightly worse instead of better.
We’ve learned it’s important to drink 8 glasses of water a day. Sipping from one glass each hour throughout the day keeps our cells hydrated. When we forget, our body pulls water from where it can find it -our urine, our intestines, and our blood-to insure that our cells can continue to function. When this fluid is pulled away, it leads to kidney stones, bladder infections, constipation and more. More chronic dehydration affects our brain, leaving us confused or unable to concentrate.
Your mouth waters and your mind wanders. You’re eating a deliciously balanced plate of grilled chicken and green beans with a whole grain roll but something is missing. You know what it is: you left the salt shaker in the kitchen. The question is, do you go and get it? Cutting salt out of your diet can be a difficult process, especially when you experience salt cravings. Cravings are a complicated phenomenon and can arise for a multitude of reasons. Understanding your salt cravings and developing strategies to combat them is one of the keys to a well-executed diet plan.
Why do we crave salt? First of all, it’s important to remember that salt is of vital importance to the proper functioning of the body. There was a point in time when salt was among the most valuable objects in the world. A salt craving can sometimes be a signal that you’re mildly dehydrated. If you have a glass of water before indulging in your salt craving, you may find that you’re simply thirsty. In most cases, cravings are experienced because a person is accustomed to a heavily salted diet. In these situations, the cure is a matter of adjusting to the taste of foods with less salt. Consider consulting a physician if your craving is accompanied by excessive thirst, dry mouth or dizziness. Sometimes a salt craving can indicate severe dehydration, complex electrolyte imbalances, Addison’s disease or certain adrenal diseases.