as ur friendly Neighborhood Nursing Student™ i feel somewhat compelled to remind everyone with the hot weather:
- every liquid except sea water and alcohol hydrates you. It’s not CHUG WATER OR DIE. in fact, gatorade and the like are designed to hydrate you efficiently.
- yeah, this includes coffee and tea and soda. the diuretic is not enough to cancel out the liquid. juices and milk have solids in them, sure, but they’re also mostly liquid! it counts.
- your body can only absorb so much water at a time, so chugging 64 oz of water at noon and calling it good will do a wonderful job of flushing your kidneys, but not so much of hydrating your tissues. it’s more important that you’re getting consistent fluid throughout the day.
- there’s a lot of fancy ways to determine How Much Water (Liquid) I Should Drink but honestly? 8 oz (1 cup) every other hour on cool days and 8 oz every hour on hot days should be fine (assuming you sleep for a normal amount of time per day…. i’m assuming ur awake 16 hours a day.)
- figure out how many oz each of ur favorite cups is. it’ll help your guesstimation.
- if ur urine is darker than light yellow, you’re dehydrated.
- if u pinch the skin on the back of ur hand for a couple seconds and it takes more than a second or two go to back to normal then ur dehydrated.
In regards to #1, don’t take this as an excuse to drink the sugar water that they call sports drinks. They aren’t bad for you per se, but please choose water.
actually this entire post was written in the spirit of ppl using it as an excuse to drink sports drinks and soda etc
ppl have been commenting abt sodium levels in soda and sugar levels in sports drinks and thats all well and good but what i’ve noticed is that people who internalize “well, ONLY WATER hydrates me” but who HATE WATER remain horrifically dehydrated cause they dont drink anything.
so like. if ur a person who haaaaates tap water, this is absolutely me giving you permission to drink whatever fluid you can stomach. please take this as a direct excuse to drink nothing but gatorade if that’s what it takes to get enough fluid into ur body.
it’s not the healthiest for you, sure, but you’re a smart enough person to know that. please drink fluids anyways.
if u like water thats gr8. if you can stomach water that’s gr8. if you can’t, that’s okay too, and you need to stay hydrated just as much as anyone else, so please drink.
I used to hate tap water, and in some places (looking at you, Iowa) it is legit disgusting, but one thing I do which helped a ton and was long term cheaper than buying soda or juice was to get a bottle of Angostura bitters. It’s a cocktail additive with a strong distinctive flavor, so although a tiny bottle is like $6 it will last you for ages. Put a small drop or dash in your glass then fill with water. It has a pleasant sort of herbal metal taste (I understand that those words don’t seem like they should go together but it’s hard to describe) which masks tap water. It also helps me smooth an upset tummy but your mileage may vary. It’s not something that will get you drunk, just a flavoring like vanilla extract.
If that all sounds like too much bother, dropping a lemon wedge into water also helps.
I am learning that lemon wedges are magical in almost everything I like to drink.
here is the magic that made me stop being chronically dehydrated:
because yeah, i can’t STAND plain water – it tastes like the inside of my mouth. it tastes like spit. imagine drinking a glass of ice cold spit. ugh. but add a squirt of this stuff to your glass of tapwater, and now it tastes like apple, cherry, lemonade, whatever.
i also got a bunch of these
and pre-prep them with flavored water, iced tea, iced coffee, whatever (or ask my helper to do it), and then when i’m thirsty but distracted and want to just grab some kind of liquid without thinking about finding a clean glass etc., i can just grab one of these.
because yeah, hating water is a thing, and dehydration SUCKS. so drink SOMETHING, don’t be a water purist. better to chug iced coffee than go without.
mio was a damn genius for comin out with that shit
can I just speak up here as someone who has been a nurse for 17 years? I heartily endorse this post and also give you permission to DRINK WHATEVER THE HELL IT TAKES TO KEEP YOU FROM BEING DEHYDRATED
especially in the summer, you can’t play around with that. drink something. seriously. for the love of kittens. DRINK SOMETHING.
Addendum: If you’re engaged in sustained activity that makes you sweat, then yes drink water, but PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF GOD also drink some Gatorade or something. If you sweat a lot and drink tons of water, you won’t be replacing your electrolytes. I used to get horrible headaches and feel awful after long hikes because I was drinking like 150 oz of water. This can cause hyponatremia, or low blood sodium levels. I started adding one bottle of a sports drink (and yes, sugar is bad, for me especially, so I drink Powerade Zero which has no sugar or calories) to my water intake and I no longer get those headaches.
There are also electrolyte supplement capsules you can get at any sporting goods or outdoor outfitter’s store that you can add to water bottles that accomplish the same result.
Hydrate or die-drate lads!!!
Just….. Be careful of your kidneys doing this? I embraced this (and “junk food is better than no food” because I’m anorexic and won’t eat if I can’t eat something that tastes really good ) wholly because anything is better than nothing, and then learned my kidneys are failing. For people with kidney disease, renal failure, kidney stones, you really do need to drink water. There are nutrients and minerals I can’t consume or they will kill my kidneys, and if I don’t get transplants, me faster. Many of these suggested drinks don’t have enough water to counter the other things I can’t have that are in them.
I’ve been drinking a lot of water with a splash of mixed up cranberry, pomegranate, lemon, and tart cherry juice (all of which are sour and kidney-friendly), about 1 tsp per 16oz of water, to give it a flavor so I’ll actually drink it. It tastes horrible, honestly, but I’m more likely to drink a liquid with a flavor. I also absolutely despise lemon in water but try to drink that, too, since citrate helps move the compounds non-functioning kidneys can’t through your body.
Products like Mio or Kool-Aid drops, you have to be careful because the dyes can cause more kidney trouble than they’re worth.
I’ve also been drinking a LOT of la croix and the like. Just enough flavor from the itty bitty bit of fruit “essence” they add while not having enough sugar to make it bad for me, and tang from the carbonation to get me to actually drink it.
I mean, yes, anything is better than nothing and if all you have available to you is a Pepsi (very big no no for renal failure) then you should drink that instead of drinking nothing, but be careful what your all-the-time water tweak or substitution is if you have renal failure and if you CAN drink water, drink water instead.