Summer can be debilitating. One of the first things that can occur this season is dehydration. You might be conscious of drinking your water but there are several changes that can happen deep within your body.
I’m going to take you through what to expect within your body and give you some great ideas on staying hydrated the right way.
What can happen to your body in the summer?
Summer stresses systems within the body and depending on your body type itself, these challenges can be varied. Summer is the time of liver challenges.
Exposing yourself to heat by working outside or sitting outside during the day can all trigger liver challenges.
When your liver is stressed, it can further stress your lymphatic system, increase inflammation and cause trouble with your adrenal function and hormones.
Hydration is a core basic. While it seems as if it’s nothing new, it is so common to find very health-conscious people struggle with several symptoms just from inadequate hydration. Keep in mind that if you do consume alcohol and caffeine regularly, your needs for hydration immediately increase.
What kind of hydration patterns do you have?
Each one of us drinks water differently. If you simply guzzle large amounts of water throughout the day, including immediately after meals, you can end up with gas and bloating and complain of indigestion a lot. This is because you dilute the digestive powers of HCL and enzymes. This also prevents actual hydration.
You could also be like someone in a desert, staying parched all day long, until your body actually starts to dehydrate, triggering thirst, and then, you end up drinking a lot of water that spoils your sleep.
This can trigger a lot of acne, urinary infections, and hormonal issues from perpetual constipation and you may end up taking laxatives and medication to relieve it,
You might be someone who has a nice looking water bottle, which inspires you to keep drinking water. This might help you stay hydrated.
You could also strive towards just being conscious of drinking water as a means of achieving better health.
Begin the day with some pure water to rehydrate after a fasting window.
Drink your water like food. Allow the water to move gently within your mouth like you might eat food, and allow it to slowly drizzle down your throat. Keep sipping water regularly throughout the day, except with meals.
Best options to stay hydrated
As I mentioned before, there are two rules to hydration. The first is noticing your requirements based on whether you consume alcohol and caffeine. The second is to look at your water drinking style.
Make sure that you do not combine water with your meals. Sip water throughout your day so that you actually absorb it. Remember that this intervention looks very basic but is also the most commonly ignored one.
Find creative ways to stay hydrated and support detoxification and temperature regulation this summer.
- Cooling herbal teas are a great way to get hydrated without getting bored. My day is filled with colourful herbal teas like hibiscus, peppermint, and wild herbs. Brew your chosen non-caffeine herbal tea in very little warm water. Allow it to sit for a few minutes. Discard the tea bag, add it to a glass of cool water, a few drops of stevia, and you have the most fun way to hydrate yourself without harming your body. I must stress the non-caffeine herbal teas as I actually had a client who misunderstood and had diluted black tea all day long. Her labs actually showed her dehydration. You could also add a tablespoon of chia to these cool drinks if you struggle with constipation.
- You might be thinking of juice. When it comes to juice it really depends. Consuming carton juices or in a juice shop loaded with sugar will again only increase your need for hydration overall. Stay away from fruit juices even if they are cold-pressed. They just become a glass full of sugar devoid of fibre. Juices can be a wonderful way to add some hydration provided you pick the right vegetables. Juicing vegetables like cucumber, celery, parsley, tomatoes, and zucchini can be another option. Combine them with ginger, lemon zest, and some chaat masala or black salt, and you have yourself a delicious way to actually benefit from hydration.
- If you can tolerate dairy, then buttermilk is another option. The truth is that summer is not the ideal season for dairy. It only works if you churn buttermilk the old-fashioned way. Beat the yoghurt and allow it to sit for 10 minutes. When the cream and the water separate, remove and discard the cream. Consume just the watery buttermilk combined with curry leaves and fresh coriander. Buttermilk made today is often just beaten curd without removing the cream. That can trigger challenges, especially in the summer and is also not very hydrating.
- Style up your water with slices of lemon, orange, mint leaves, or orange zest. They add very subtle flavour to your water and help with digestion too. Just make sure that you do not fill an entire bottle with mint leaves and let them soak all day long. Many restaurants do this. It can be quite toxic after a few hours. Add your leaves just as you are about to drink the water.
- Finally, I must mention cold soups. Summer is a great time to include cold soups as a part of your meal or as a snack. Think of using vegetables like beetroot, cucumber, and tomato to whip up a cold soup that can help you combat the ravages of the summer heat.
As you can see, hydration has so much to it. Your hydration needs, your hydration patterns, and your options for hydrating yourself must all go into your choices. Take some time to think about this and choose the right fluids that can help you swim gracefully through a scorching summer.
Edited by Saheli Sen Gupta