What a lovely surprise! I bit into a cold slice of cucumber that was so refreshing and tasty! I like cucumbers, but didn’t expect to have such a delightful experience. It’s unbearably hot outside and that cucumber cooled my throat as I munched away. I’ve been craving all sorts of fruits and vegetables lately.
Melons and other fruits that are in season right now are particularly sweet and juicy. Tomatoes are ripe all the way through and the flavor is amazing. Even my kale from the garden is tender and delicious. So, yes, I love all these fresh fruits and veggies normally, but I feel like my body is craving them all the more due to the heat.
There’s good reason that my body and brain are saying more, more! Certain foods are particularly high in water and quench our thirst in a very natural way.
Every system in the body relies on water to regulate body temperature, carry nutrients and oxygen to cells, eliminate toxins and more. The needs for each individual person vary by activity levels and environmental temperature.
To be clear, we will always need water, about 9 glasses of fluid per day for women and 12 or more for men.
Fun fact: babies are born with about 70 percent of their bodies made up of water, but by the time they are elderly, they are down to 55%. (ugh, the wrinkles!) The average person is made up of about 60% water, with men having a higher percentage than women, and leaner bodies more than those that have greater fatty tissue. According to The Journal of Biological Chemistry , the brain and heart are composed of 73% water, and the lungs are about 83% water. The skin contains 64% water, muscles and kidneys are 79%, and even the bones are a watery 31%.
Make sure you add to your daily allowance if you have been exercising or find yourself in situations where you are sweating such as suntanning at the beach, gardening etc. Replenish your body before, during and after these activities. Up your intake of fluids if you are in a higher altitude, breastfeeding or have a fever. Your body will need more water to function optimally.
Signs of dehydration:
- Feeling lightheaded, nauseous and/or have a headache.
- Urine is a dark yellow to amber
- Bad breath due to reduced saliva. Mouth and tongue may feel dry and sticky.
- Skin is dry, chapped lips
- Tired, mood is depressed
- Brain is less alert, not able to concentrate
- Blood pressure too low.
Here’s the good news! We can get about 20% of our fluid from food. I wish I could eat all my fluid in watermelon! The added benefits of hydrating with food are the additional nutrients that these foods provide. The vitamins, minerals and fiber found in foods with high water content are all vital to good health.
Bonus: water-rich foods are more filling and can aid in weight control. So, it’s important to be conscious of adding in water-rich foods to support your body.
Tips to add more hydrating foods in your day:
- Add fruit to your water to encourage more consumption. It’s more fun, pretty and tasty. When you finish your glass of water, you can enjoy the fruit as a bonus!
- Cut up veggies while you make your dinner to have ready for easy-to-go snack packs. I cut up cucumbers and bell peppers most nights. It keeps my hand out of the chip bag when I need a pick-me-up in the afternoon.
- Cut up fruits like melons or apples. In-the-moment poor snack decisions are circumvented since you already have your treat ready.
- Get creative with your dinner menu. I love grilled peaches with pork and melon with my fish. Add berries or raw veggies such as zucchini to your salads.
- Add lettuce or sliced cucumber to your sandwiches and wraps. The crunch is nice and it will help fill you up.
- Toss in spinach, red peppers and onions with your morning eggs for a nutritions and delicious breakfast. Or try adding broccoli, zucchini, mushrooms, tomatoes…so many yummy choices!
- Throw in a bunch of greens to your favorite smoothie. The kids will never know!
Check out this listing for more favorite foods high in water content such as radishes (95%), eggplants (92%) peaches (88%) and so many more!
Feel refreshed with these hydrating recipes!
Find more delightful and easy water-rich recipes in your DinnerTime Recipe Box.
You can search for an ingredient (e.g. eggplant, etc) the name or part of the name of a recipe (lasagna), a cuisine (Italian), type of dish (e.g. soup), an occasion (Thanksgiving, breakfast, tailgating, etc).