Temperatures across the nation are sweltering, making it dangerously hot for seniors braving the outdoor elements. Increased heat, sweat, and stress are three dangerous dehydration triggers. When you don’t consume enough water to sustain your body systems, the body begins to draw moisture from body systems never meant to quench the thirst of dehydration.
Let’s look at some of the easiest ways to avoid this dangerous condition:
- Carry water with you at all times: Keep a large water bottle nearby during the summer months – at home, work, and in the car. Remember to drink from this bottle throughout the day, even if it is slightly warm. Hydration is not debatable.
- Drink water before and after each meal: By simply rinsing your mouth out after eating you decrease the potential for dehydration. Water is also a great way to keep hunger pangs at bay.
- The bathroom: One little-known hydration tip is to drink a glass of water each time after using the bathroom. It’s the perfect way to replenish the fluids that are lost in elimination.
- Take it easy on the caffeine: For some people, the day never begins until a cup of coffee has been consumed. Unfortunately caffeine is found in coffee, tea, and sodas. Compounding things is the fact that these beverages are all diuretics, meaning they promote the loss of water through urine.
- Alcohol and summer: Alcohol works the same way caffeine works, especially during the hot summer months. With this in mind, seniors should limit their intake of beverages that double as diuretics.
- Splurge on fruits: When you consider all the juices associated with natural fruits, is it any wonder that fresh produce provides a much-needed boost of hydration? Seniors should eat hydrating items like pineapple, pear, watermelon, cantaloupe, mango, apples and peaches.
- Eat all those vegetables: As kids, we often found ourselves sitting at the kitchen table for hours on end, refusing to eat the broccoli mom served with dinner. As adults, however, we now understand an increased vegetable intake can help to provide adequate hydration. Seniors should reach for veggies like cucumber, squash, or bell pepper.
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