Summer may be around the corner, but hydration is an important part of your family’s health year-round. Keep in mind these easy hydration tips to ensure your family gets the fluid intake they need.
What is dehydration?
Dehydration is a condition that occurs when someone loses more fluids than he or she takes in. Infants and children are especially vulnerable because of their relatively small body weights and high turnover of water and electrolytes. They’re also the group most likely to experience diarrhea, a common cause of dehydration. Vomiting, fever, excessive heat/sweating, and increased urination can also lead to dehydration.
Symptoms of dehydration include:
- Dry, sticky mouth
- Sleepiness or tiredness- children are likely to be less active than usual
- Decreased urine output
- No wet diapers for three hours for infants
- Few or no tears when crying
- Dry skin
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
What does proper hydration look like?
Staying healthy means staying hydrated, since our bodies depend on water to survive. Every cell, tissue and organ in your body needs water in order to work correctly. For example, your body uses water to maintain its temperature, remove waste and lubricate joints. Water is needed for good overall health.
Some of the top beverages I recommended to my patients for hydration include: water, low-fat or fat-free milk, and 100 percent fruit juice.
Keep in mind these tips for choosing healthy beverages:
- Avoid drinking your calories
- Avoid drinks that are high in sugar, such as soda, fruit drinks, punch, sweet tea, etc.
- Choose beverages that have low or no added sugar
- Remember that water is the source for hydration
- Read nutrition labels and choose a beverage with less than 6 grams of sugar per serving
- Be sure to double-check the serving size and number of servings in a bottle.