To prevent dehydration…avoid it!

Dehydration is a major problem in the scorching heat. In temperate countries like India, the heat does not subside even till the end of September. Even more recently, monsoon rains have failed and the weather is dry. The World Health Organization declared last July as the hottest July in the world. Let’s see how to survive the heat of the sun and dehydration.

Due to significant water loss through sweat, high temperatures make people feel uncomfortable and tired. Retention of body water is essential to avoid heat related problems. If you want to avoid dehydration, it’s important to take in enough fluids each day. Dehydration occurs when your body loses 1 to 2 percent of water. Dehydration can cause a variety of problems, including organ failure, fatigue, headaches and muscle weakness. Therefore, it is important to maintain a proper level of body water. Fortis Malar Hospital Medical Dietitian Mr. Pichaiya Kasinathan offers the following advice.

It is important to drink plenty of water on hot days to avoid dehydration. Additionally, it can help reduce body heat and increase natural cooling. The harmful effects of excessive heat on the human body can be reduced by making proper dietary and lifestyle changes. It is also good to consider small grains like gram, millet, varaku, and rye.

1. Drink water with every meal and snack: A simple rule of thumb is to drink 1 milliliter of fluid for every calorie consumed. Drink at least two to three liters of water every day, but if you are very active and do a lot of physical work, take up to three liters of water.

2. Drink water before you feel thirsty: By the time you start feeling thirsty, your body is already dehydrated. Check the color of your urine to determine if you’re drinking enough water. When urinating, the straw should be yellow in color. If you see a dark yellow color, you may need to increase your fluid intake.

3. If consuming caffeinated beverages, balance it with decaffeinated beverages: Both alcohol and caffeinated beverages cause diuresis. Instead of rehydrating the body, diuretics cause the body to lose more water. So it has to compensate for the required water.

4. Take fruit juices: Fruit juices are rich in nutrients. Fruit and vegetable juices may feel too thick or too sweet for some people. Some people don’t like the extra calories it contains. So it can be mixed with soda or water.

5. Drink water: Most of your fluid needs are met by the water and other beverages you drink. You can also get fluids through the food you eat. For example, foods high in water content such as broccoli, zucchini, cucumber, tomato or melon, and soups can help increase fluid intake.

6. Carry a water bottle: This is a great idea to maintain or increase your body’s water level while participating in outdoor activities or running errands, especially during the warmer months. Choose reusable bottles and make sure they are BPA-free.

7. Add citrus fruit: If you find it difficult to drink plain water, add a slice of lemon and some honey to it. The taste of it may make you want to drink more water.

8. Choose water over processed soft drinks: Water is a healthier choice than artificially sweetened beverages including processed fruit juices, sports energy drinks. This will improve your body hydration and help you save money and calories.

9. Maintain a “Water Intake” Note: Reviewing your past activity can motivate you to maintain your fluid needs. Try one of the many apps for tracking calories, nutrients, and fluids.

10. Consume old rice (nirakaram) once daily: When rice or millets are fermented overnight, their nutritional and energy content increases significantly. It is considered the best probiotic food because the anti-nutritional components of rice are broken down by lactic acid bacteria, improving micronutrient and mineral bioavailability. It is considered best to eat it for breakfast as the nutrients are absorbed in our body and give us energy to start the day. Add water and a little curd or buttermilk to the body to cool down.

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