Staying hydrated in the summer heat
It’s not rocket science but it fuels your whole body – WATER! Drinking 8-10 cups of water daily is key to keeping your kidneys, heart, joints, brain, digestion tract, and skin functioning at the optimum level.
Staying hydrated when exercising or during the hottest days of summer is crucial to good health. Our body weight is over 50% water. Water is lost faster from our bodies when the weather is really hot and during exercise, in other words when we sweat profusely.
We lose an average two to two and a half cups of water daily just going about our normal lives. Even when we breathe we lose water! Dehydration happens when we don’t drink enough water and we lose fluids faster than we can replace them in our cells.
Keeping the body hydrated helps the heart pump blood more easily through the blood vessels to the muscles and it helps the muscles work efficiently.
Pinch your skin to see how fast it bounces back. This “pinch test” indicates normal elasticity (hydrated skin snaps back to normal quickly) vs. decreased or compromised elasticity (dehydrated skin remains elevated and returns to normal slowly). To keep skin looking young and to prevent sagging, hydration is important.
If you are engaged in activities outside, especially during these hot summer days, watch for signs of dehydration in yourself and others:
- Dark Urine
- Increased Heart Rate
- Muscle Cramps
- Loss of Skin Elasticity
- Sweating profusely