Hydration and Your Daily Dose of Fruits and Vegetables
By Lia Threat
Click aqui para español- >La hidratación y tu dosis diaria de frutas y verduras
Sometimes, the New Orleans summer heat can make us feel like we are struggling to stay hydrated! With so many conflicting ideas about the ideal amount of fluid consumption, it is logical to wonder how much water is enough. The human body needs water for homeostasis as all our cells require water for optimum function. In extreme cases of deprivation, dehydration even results in death.
A general way to make sure you are getting enough fluid is to divide your body weight in half and consume that amount in fluid ounces of water. You can also calculate 1/3 of your body weight in fluid plus 8 ounces for every alcoholic drink and 8 ounces for 30 or more minutes of exercise.
An example would be a healthy 130 lb. woman who would consume approximately 65 ounces of water per day, considering she is not experiencing any other health issues or changes in her body due to pregnancy and nursing.
Adequate fluid intake can vary from person to person based on physiological needs. Fluid intake requirements may occur based on temperature, physical exertion, consumption of fruit and vegetables, and other fluids. The effects of pregnancy, aging, and other health issues related to the kidney and bladder may also influence fluid intake.
There are physical signs of dehydration which may be helpful indicators for people of all ages to notice. A darker and more intense yellow urine may indicate a need to increase water consumption. Additionally, increased thirst, dry mucous membranes, and changes in skin color may be signs that hydration is needed.
Since foods are also a great way to increase hydration, choose those with a high water content to meet your daily goals.
You can include the following foods to boost your fluid intake:
Melon (especially watermelon)
Ideas for recipes that may incorporate more than one hydrating food and drink: smoothies, fruit, and cucumber-infused water, dips utilizing the above vegetables, or using veggies in place of chips, a chilled tomato soup such as gazpacho, and fresh fruit popsicles, which are to keep children hydrated.