Summer Wellness: Hydration 101

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"Summer is here, and it"s hotter than ever! Staying hydrated is super important for all aspects of our health, both mental and physical. It"s common knowledge that we should drink at least 8 cups of water a day (64 oz), but working out and being out in the sun can increase sweating which increases the need for water even more. In fact, you can lose between 1-8 lbs of water for every hour exercising in hot weather. Getting too dehydrated can lead to severe symptoms, especially when exercising in the sun.The rule of thumb of 8 8oz servings of water is old and probably inaccurate. New recommendations are to consume anywhere between 0.5-1oz of water per lb body weight depending on how much we sweat, amount of exercise we get, and climate we live in among other factors. For example, a person who weighs 200 lbs would need at least 100 oz of water per day. Thats almost twice as much as the normal 64 oz recommendation given.Sports drinks like Gatorade, Powerade, etc. may seem like a great way to rehydrate someone, but they lack the electrolyte concentration to actually hydrate us better than plain water. When Gatorade is given to pro sports teams, they also include an extra electrolyte packet to mix in with the consumer product to be more effective. It changes the taste, but I personally don"t like the sweet taste of Gatorade to begin with. Along with the sodium and potassium needed to rehydrate, we also get things like sugars (which can be useful after strenuous exercise and help to put water back in our system faster), preservatives, artificial colors/flavors, and other gross stuff. No bueno"

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