National Hydration Day: Make it a summer of water!
National Hydration Day is June 23rd and the perfect time to remember how hydration levels impact our health tremendously, as the summer weather heats all the way up! You can make drinking water easier by always carrying a water bottle, adding fruits, teas or herbs to your water, and setting water reminders using an app, timer or fitness tracker. But, there are other ways to stay hydrated besides drinking enough water. In this article we will look at staying hydrated with type 2, the symptoms and effects of dehydration and other ways you can stay hydrated besides drinking water.
Excessive thirst and increased urination are common symptoms of diabetes. Increased blood sugar forces your kidneys to work harder than usual to keep your glucose levels in balance. Once your kidneys can’t keep up, your body will try to flush the increased glucose out of the body through urine. This will usually leave you feeling thirsty. Drinking water helps to rehydrate the blood when the body tries to remove high levels of glucose through urine. That’s why diabetic patients urinate so often. Frequent bathroom breaks can lead to dehydration, leaving you with an excessive thirst for water. This is your body’s way of telling you to replace the fluids it has just flushed. Increasing the amount of water intake can soothe these symptoms. You can always consult with your doctor for advice on how much water you individually need per day.
The Cleveland Clinic reminds us that Water helps:
- Aid digestion and get rid of waste.
- Work your joints. Water lubricates them.
- Make saliva (which you need to eat).
- Balance your body’s chemicals. Your brain needs it to create hormones and neurotransmitters.
- Deliver oxygen all over your body.
- Cushion your bones.
- Regulate your body temperature.
When you’re dehydrated you may feel dizzy, tired, thirsty and develop a headache. You may have dark colored urine. Since About 55 percent of your blood is liquid, dehydration can lower your blood volume and affect blood pressure. You may experience changes in your heart rate, since water loss leads to lower blood volume. This makes the heart work harder to move blood throughout your body. Getting hydrated raises blood volume and returns your heart rate to normal.
You may be asking yourself, “Besides drinking water, how can I make sure I am hydrated?” The great news is, that there are foods to avoid and foods to lean towards that support your hydration.
AVOID Hydration Suckers-
Salt and alcohol are two hydration suckers. When you drink alcohol, your body suppresses the creation of the hormone vasopressin or ADH, causing you to have to urinate more frequently. Your body is trying to clear alcohol out of your bloodstream. Excessive urination causes dehydration.
When you consume salt, it “is absorbed into your bloodstream, making your blood saltier than it was before. As the saltier blood circulates through the body, it makes the fluid outside of our body cells saltier than the fluid inside the cells. The cells notice the change right away. That's because the extra salt outside acts like a magnet, pulling water out of the cells. When the thirst center goes on alert because things are too salty and the body needs water to dilute the salt, that's when you start to feel thirsty. The constant balancing of salt and water in the body helps maintain the right amount of water in our cells and in the bloodstream. That controls our blood pressure.”
CONSUME WATER RICH FOODS-
Have you ever noticed that during the summer months you tend to want more fruits and veggies, cold salads or lighter meals? This is your body naturally leaning towards water rich foods - we eat our water too!
Avoiding foods that are fried, salty, sugary and excess alcohol, while sticking to water rich foods like these will help you stay hydrated this summer.
It’s important you don’t drink soda or juice if you’re looking to quench your thirst. These drinks are high in sugar, which may trigger a spike in your blood levels and make your thirst even worse. Water is always the best choice for your health, and for hydration. For more information on living your healthiest summer, Join the Winning Type 2 Diabetes Together community on Facebook and connect with thousands of other diabetics around the world.