The Importance of Hydration in the Winter
When it’s bitterly cold outside, a glass of water just doesn’t sound as appealing as it does in the summer. But avoiding water in the winter has negative effects on your overall health. It’s just as crucial to stay hydrated in the colder months as it is when it’s hot outside. Here are a few reasons why.
• Water helps regulate body temperature and is essential to the function of cells, tissues and organs.
• Our brains are composed of 85% water, so dehydration impacts mood, energy levels and mental performance.
• Drinking water boosts your immune system and helps prevent you from getting sick during cold and flu season.
• Drinking water can increase your metabolism and helps keep the pounds off during the family-feast months.
So how do you avoid dehydration in the winter? A general rule of thumb is to drink about half your body weight in fluid ounces of water every day. This will help ensure your body is running properly.
Too cold for cold water? Certain hot beverages like lemon water and caffeine-free green tea count toward your water intake goal. Most fruits and vegetables are also great sources of water, especially celery, broccoli, and strawberries. And soup will work too, as long as it contains low-sodium broth.
There are a few things you should try to stay away from if you think you haven’t had enough water. Limit your intake of soda, coffee and alcohol, as caffeine and alcohol will dehydrate you. Tobacco, dietary supplements and certain prescription drugs will also dehydrate you.
So, grab yourself a glass of water or two before you head out into the cold this winter. And don’t forget to bundle up, either.