Hydration is important now more than ever since warmer weather is on the way! Drinking water on a regular basis is important, and increasing fluid intake when it is hot out will help counteract the effects that warmer temperatures and higher humidity have on the body.
So how much water do you need? Roughly two liters of water a day is a good average, but you need even more when it is hot and humid outside, or when you are active and perspiring. To get a more specific idea of what your individual needs are, simply divide your body weight by two. This number equals the total ounces of water (or non-caffeinated fluids) you need for the day. If consumed throughout the day this level of intake should help you maintain adequate hydration regardless of the weather.
For example, say you weigh 200 pounds. Take 200 and divide by 2. This gives you 100. So, you’ll need approximately 100 oz (or 12.5 glasses) of water throughout the day to keep you hydrated.
It is important to remember that dehydration can lead to increased blood pressure and fatigue. Staying adequately hydrated every day can help you stay more alert while on the job. You might think you need caffeine to stay more alert. However, caffeine actually pulls water out of the body and works against your hydration status. Be sure to consume an equal amount plain water for every caffeinated beverage you consume to be sure you are always positively hydrated and alert.
Here are some tips to keep you ahead of the heat and well hydrated:
- Always carry a water bottle and keep one in your truck! Chances are if it’s in reach you will drink more.
- When you’re feeling sleepy, grab a glass of cold water. Studies show that you will feel more alert after drinking water. It’s a great way to get the afternoon buzz going without sugar!
- Adding a flavored tea bag (such as passion fruit or peach) to cold water will give you more flavor and a small amount of caffeine.
- Drink hot herbal tea in the evening. It’s extra hydrating and a relaxing way to end your day.
- Eat whole foods that are water rich, like fruits and veggies (melons and celery are great examples). These foods will automatically increase your fluid intake. Processed foods do the complete opposite.
- Remember, you can always contact your Rolling Strong Wellness Coach, who can work with you to learn more about hydration.