Whenever you feel tired and dull, you might have heard others advising you to drink more water and take care of your diet. Dehydration occurs when you lose more water than you take in and this leads to many kinds of body imbalances and symptoms which can complicate your health.
The most accepted notion to compensate for dehydration is consuming lots of water. However, only water is not enough for hydration. You need many other sources to keep your fluid-electrolyte balance in the right fit. The best way you can find for keeping yourself rejuvenated is by consuming a proper and right kind of diet.
There is absolutely no way to think of what diet you should follow to know what to eat when dehydrated. This article is your step guide to help you get acquainted with the correct diet to keep yourself hydrated all the time.
What Are Hydrating Foods?
Around 20% of the daily hydration needs come from foods and the rest 80% from beverages. While we tend to focus on water and drinks as major hydration sources, we must not forget the importance of solid foods in maintaining our electrolyte-fluid balance.
Hydrating foods are the foods that provide us with optimum, per se good amounts of water and electrolytes upon consumption. A considerable amount of daily hydrating foods are necessary to be included in the diet in order to compensate for the lost electrolyte and fluids and also to maintain the natural balance in the body.
According to research, you should drink 8 ounces of water eight times a day. Additionally, to prevent dehydration, more than just beverages, make sure to include healthy foods in your daily diet as well. For a limited period of time, you can also resort to a liquid diet in order to practice proper hydration.
Best Foods And Drinks To Overcome Dehydration
Here is a list of the best hydrating foods and drinks to prevent dehydration and also to remain optimally hydrated all the time.
Watermelon is one of the best sources of hydration you can have. Easily available, feasible, and delicious to eat, watermelon accounts for about half a cup of water in a 1 cup serving. This literally means half of the food is water!
Apart from the goodness of water, watermelon is also rich in antioxidants, fiber, and several important nutrients, including vitamin C, vitamin A, and magnesium. Watermelon is a great accompaniment as a side dish or a salad or can also be eaten as a snack in the evening.
Cucumbers contain around 95% water which makes them one of the best foods to get proper hydration. Cucumbers are preferably low in calories and rich in nutrients like vitamins, potassium, magnesium, etc. Being rich in water content, cucumbers are a refreshing and rejuvenating option to include in your daily diet.
Apart from maintaining the fluid balance of your body, cucumber also helps in alleviating many health risks including cardiovascular issues, bowel problems, skin disorders, etc.
Strawberries are a liked food choice by many people. This bright-red colored fruit has 91% of the water content and is rich in essential nutrients like Vitamin C, folate, fiber, antioxidants, etc. Regularly eating strawberries has been shown to lower inflammation, which can help protect against heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, and other cancers.
You can have strawberries in salads or as a part of desserts. They even go quite well in smoothies and shakes and thus, daily consumption of strawberries in the diet isn’t rocket science.
Spinach falls under the category of green leafy vegetables which isn’t a strong choice of likeness in many people, especially children. However, spinach is an excellent source of hydration and is extremely healthy since it paves the way to many important nutrients like antioxidants, dietary fiber, calcium, vitamins, and plant compounds.
Spinach is also a compulsory addition in many therapeutic diets owing to its disease-alleviating properties. It can be included in the diet as a vegetable, complementary salad proportion, in smoothies, soups, and even in foods like pasta and noodles.
Celery contains around 95% of total water content and is a food extremely rich in dietary fiber. It has a low-calorie count and a high vitamin K, folate, and potassium content. Celery is also rich in antioxidants, Vitamin C, K, A, and B, and also contains good amounts of minerals namely calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and sodium.
Celery can be consumed as salads or in juices. Drinking celery juice helps in better ingestion of the vegetable thus providing you with larger amounts of minerals and vitamins than if you simply munched on a stalk of celery.
Might sound unnatural, but yes, milk is one of the most hydrating beverages you can think of. It contains many important nutrients like sodium, carbs, proteins, calcium, and Vitamin D. One glass of milk daily in your diet can work wonders in rehydration and also keep you energized and active throughout the day.
7) Coconut water
You might have definitely sipped upon coconut water while walking down the street in the scorching heat. Easily the best and most feasible drinks available, a hydrating drink like coconut water contains natural sugars and is a powerhouse of many antioxidants, minerals like potassium, calcium, magnesium, etc.
Coconut water also helps to fight off many diseases and is a great ally for clear, glowing, healthy, and hydrating skin. It’s also naturally energetic, making it a better alternative to bottled sports or energy beverages.
To know more about coconut water, read 5 Health Benefits Of Drinking Coconut Water Daily.
8) Lemon water
If you haven’t had lemon water or nimbu paani yet in your daily diet to curb your thirst or prevent dehydration, I must say you are missing out on a lot! Lemon water is the best hydration option when it comes to beverages. With the goodness of vitamin C, many essential minerals, antioxidants, and fiber, lemon water turns out one of the best nutrition-packed healthy electrolyte drinks for you to sip on.
You can make your lemon water more interesting and healthier by adding honey, ginger, cinnamon, etc. in it, making it a wholesome and refreshing drink that keeps you decked up all day and would prevent fatigue.
Foods You Should Not Eat in Dehydration
There are many foods we consume in our daily routine which might directly or indirectly be dehydrating us and in the back of our minds, we are not aware of them.
Well, technically there are many different food varieties we must avoid in order to keep ourselves optimally hydrated. Following are some of the most common foods which can knowingly or unknowingly dehydrate you and you must limit or avoid their consumption-
1) Caffeine/ Coffee
Coffee is a crazy addiction for many out there but truth to be told, coffee contains caffeine which is basically a diuretic. A daily limit of 1-2 cups of coffee per day would not do any harm, but overconsumption can definitely leave you dehydrated.
However, scientifically, coffee and tea do not preferably cause a major fluid loss so their consumption in limited amounts is totally fine. Make sure you know how much caffeine your body requires and you do not go over and beyond that. Since coffee helps stay awake and alert, people gulp down several cups of it to stay awake. This may again turn out to be a felony and can cause health issues.
Related: How to stay awake without caffeine?
2) Fried foods
Fried food includes anything purchased from a fast-food establishment. They mostly contain a lot of sugar and salt in them. Fries, burgers, pizza, etc., fall under the category of fast foods. It is always advised to limit or avoid the consumption of junk food or fried foods. The tastier they are, the worse effect they have on your health in the long term.
From the point of view of hydration too, fried foods are a total no-no. They devoid the body of fluid and electrolytes and cause obesity, heart issues, digestion problems, and whatnot.
3) High-fiber foods
This might come as a surprise to you but foods that have a very high fiber content must be avoided in order to prevent dehydration. Fiber is no doubt quite beneficial for our body but TOO MUCH FIBER isn’t. Dehydration is more likely in people who consume more than 50 grams of fiber each day.
4) High-protein foods
Protein constitutes one of the most important parts of our daily nutritional intake. But foods containing a very high amount of protein, if consumed in excess, might lead to dehydration, according to studies. This food mainly includes animal sources like white and red meat, excessive dairy products, etc.
A hydrating diet is as important as consuming whole foods and a nutritional diet. However, keeping a balance between the two and conjugating the nutrients and water in optimum amounts in your diet on a regular basis is all you need to keep the right metabolism and natural body balance going.