When the temperature rises our bodies crave refreshment. We guzzle down water, iced tea and sports drinks to avoid dehydration, which drains energy and prevents the body from being able to maintain its usual functions.
Experts recommend drinking at least two liters of water per day, depending on a variety of factors, such exercise. And while most of the water we consume comes in a glass, people receive about 20% of their water intake through food.
Here are five of the most hydrating foods you should keep in your fridge this summer - plus three things you should consume in moderation:
At over 95% water, veggies don’t get any more hydrating than this. In addition to replenishing water and eliminating toxins from the body, cucumbers have been shown to help control blood pressure, assist with weight loss and reduce cholesterol, among other health benefits.
This pretty pink fruit is packed with about 90% water, living up to its name. Your body will still appreciate the summertime snack long after the seed-spitting contest is over, as watermelon has been associated with everything from improved heart health to reduced muscle soreness in athletes.
Whether you like 'em red, orange, yellow or green, peppers are a healthy, hydrating, low-calorie snack. Depending on the color, they clock in around 92% water and offer an array of vitamins and antioxidants, including vitamins A and C.
Fresh berries are another great option during summertime. They range from about 85% to 91% water depending on the type - strawberries have the highest water content - and can be eaten in about a zillion different ways. Berries have been shown to help regulate weight, boost mental sharpness and lower blood pressure.
These fast-growing summer fruits are almost 95% water and can be used on everything from salads to bruschetta. Tomatoes are also loaded with lycopene, which has been linked to reduced risk of several cancers.
Consume in moderation:
Alcohol drains your body of water - hence all those trips to the bathroom. Your body loses out even more when you’re outside drinking and sweating on a hot summer day.
Too much salt has become common in American diets, thanks to the prominence of processed and packaged foods. Use the salt shaker lightly at home and sub in herbs and spices when you can.
High-protein diets cause more frequent urination, so counteract this by increasing your water consumption simultaneously.
The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture