Staying Hydrated in the Summer Months
Hydration is also important to maintain a healthy functioning digestive system. For example, we need fluids to create our stomach acid and digestive enzymes to enable us to smoothly breakdown our food. Water is drawn into the digestive system to help soften stools to make them easier to pass. Dehydration can lead to constipation, so it is important to have at least 8 glasses of fluid. This may seem a lot, but spread throughout the day should be easily achievable.
Some drinks are better than others. For instance, caffeine containing drinks like tea and coffee can help with thirst, but too much caffeine can be dehydrating.
Many people find drinking warm or cold water uninteresting, so we have put together some ideas on how to make water-based drinks more interesting.
Soak and chill – When it is hot outside what could be better than a lovely cool flavoured water from the fridge. Keeping a jug of water in the fridge can be enhanced by adding some fruits or vegetables for flavour. Ideas include strawberries, lemon, orange or lime slices, cucumber, melon or pomegranate. You can also add in herbs like basil, rosemary, lemon balm and mint.
Ice is nice – Flavoured ice cubes can help chill a drink and make it more interesting. Add fruit or fruit juice in an ice cube tray and freeze… ready to add to your glass of water.
Herbal teas – These often have digestive qualities and are hydrating and caffeine free. Herbs like chamomile, ginger, cinnamon, peppermint or fennel tea make a stomach soothing drink. For example, just pour boiling water onto a slice of ginger root, a stick of cinnamon or some mint leaves and leave it to steep.
Herbal tea bags can also be used and can be made as a hot drink. In summer these can be left to cool and then chilled in the fridge for a refreshing drink.
Coconut water – This is a great drink for summertime as it is full of electrolytes for quick hydration and is alkaline; so great for people with overly acidic digestive systems.