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6 tips for staying hydrated this summer

Summer is marked by hot and humid conditions. A:er all, the band e Lovin' Spoonful didn't sing, 'Hot town, summer in the city. Back of my neck getting dirty and gritty' because the summer weather is crisp and cool. Although summer temperatures can make a day at the beach or in the pool ideal, that rising mercury also can contribute to dehydration.

The Mayo Clinic advises that water is critical to every cell, tissue and organ in the human body. The body relies on water to function properly. Water helps to regulate body temperature, flush waste from the body, lubricate and cushion joints, and promote healthy digestion. And that's just the start. So when temperatures climb and the body begins sweating to cool off, it is vital to replenish lost fluids at a faster rate. e U.S. National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine says women should consume 2.7 liters of fluid per day, while men need 3.7 liters. These amounts increase if one is exercising, sweating, has an illness like a fever, or is vomiting.

The following are six ways to stay properly hydrated to avoid adverse reactions during hot summer days.

1. Consume a glass of water when you wake up. Start the day off with some water to give you an energy boost and get your metabolism moving.

2. Coffee and tea count toward fluid intake. Drinking your favorite tea or coffee is an another way to take in fluids. A 2016 meta-analysis published in the Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport found that caffeine doesn't contribute to dehydration for healthy adults, so having a cup or two should be fine.

3. Certain foods are hydrating as well. Hydrating foods include cucumbers, celery, tomatoes, watermelon, strawberries, grapefruit, and peppers. The Mayo Clinic says the average person gets 20 percent of his fluid intake from food.

4. Make water more fun. Add unsweetened flavoring to water if you find plain water too bland. You can squeeze in lemon or lime juice, or float cucumber or apple slices in the water for some flavor.

5. Reach for calorie-free beverages before food. It's easy to mistake the signs of dehydration for hunger. By drinking a glass of water or another unsweetened beverage prior to every meal, you can stay hydrated and reduce the amount of food you eat. This can be part of a healthy weight loss plan.

6. Occasionally consume electrolyte powders and drinks. Working out in the heat or sweating profusely can unbalance electrolytes in the body. The Cleveland Clinic says electrolytes are substances that help the body regulate chemical reactions and maintain balance between fluids inside and outside of your cells. They include sodium, calcium and potassium. An electrolyte-infused beverage can help replenish these lost substances.

Staying hydrated is essential at all times, but it's especially important when summer temperatures can make loss of body fluid more significant.

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