Issue 11: Hydration

On warm summer days, dehydration can strike fast. A single exercise session or simply being outside can leave you parched, foggy, and nauseous, if you don't top-up your fluids. We've rounded up some of the best hydration resources to help you maintain fluid balance all summer long (and beyond).

With temperatures skyrocketing in many places right now, hydration has been coming up a lot lately. 

Between outdoor exercise, summer sweat losses, and ice-cold beers at barbecues, many of us can find ourselves under-hydrated at this time of the year. 

Like other aspects of nutrition, hydration should be personalized. Some of us will lose up to 2.4L of fluid per hour during exercise, while others will experience more modest fluid losses.  

Regardless of where you stand, paying attention to hydration is worth it. As little as a 2% drop in body weight due to fluid loss has been shown to impair cognition and aerobic capacity.

With that in mind, we've collated some of our favorite resources on hydration to help you feel great all summer long (and beyond).

1. Electrolytes may be the answer to muscle cramps.

New research shows that drinking electrolyte-containing water helps prevent muscle cramps during exercise. However, other studies suggest that it depends on the type of cramp.

2. 6 unusual signs of dehydration.

The symptoms of dehydration extend far beyond thirst. Feeling foggy or craving sweets (yes, sweets)? You might be low on fluids. 

3. How to spot heat illness before it takes hold.

It's easy to overdo it on hot days, especially when you're not used to scorching temperatures. Headache, nausea, rapid pulse, and chills are all signs that it's time to cool off and rehydrate. 

4. Surprising benefits of staying hydrated. 

Getting enough fluid has been shown to impact energy levels and brain function, prevent kidney stones, alleviate constipation and assist with weight loss. 

Sparkling water with a lemon wedge on a wooden table

Summer hydration tips

 💧 Keep a water bottle full and visible during the workday.  

🍓 Add fruit wedges and herbs to plain water to make it more appealing.

🍺 Drink water before and after alcoholic beverages to offset alcohol-related fluid losses. 

🚽 Monitor your urine: Lemonade or lighter usually means that you're hydrated! 

🚙 Keep an extra stash of water in the back of your car for hot days.

⚡️ On hot days, add in a sports drink during and after exercise to replete electrolytes. 

🏖 Protect yourself from the sun: Sunburn can accelerate dehydration.

Athlete with water bottle on a trail