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It’s summertime! Woo hoo!

When you think about summer do you imagine yourself lolling on a tropical beach with a fruity cocktail that has an umbrella garnish? Or maybe you prefer to picnic accompanied by grilled burgers and hot dogs. Or what about playing a rousing game of baseball or golf? But of all the fun things we can do in the summer, drinking water is the most important.

I’ll bet that burst your bubble, huh?

Water may not seem as exciting as a summer trip to a tropical island, but it is crucial. Drinking plenty of water is also a great way to celebrate your favorite summer holiday — National Hydration Day, June 23rd. (I’m sure you have it marked on your calendar. Wink!)

You Are What You Drink

Did you know that roughly 60% of your body is water? Water keeps your body “machine” functioning at peak performance by maintaining body temperature, regulating blood pressure, flushing bacteria, aiding digestion, and keeping sodium levels in check.

If you already drink a lot of water throughout the day, you are ahead of the game. However, if this year’s summer temperatures are as hot as forecasters predict, you may need to do more. Here are a few pointers that might be useful.

Track Each Gulp

Really, unless you track how much water you consume each day, there is no way of knowing if you are drinking enough. Just about every fitness app has a function to track water intake, and most will tell you exactly how much water you need according to your age, body type, and fitness activities. If you set a goal through the app your smartphone will remind you to drink up.

Roughly, men should consume at least 3.7 liters of fluid per day through water and food. Women should take in roughly 2.7 liters.

But Water Tastes Yucky

My mother used to always complain about the “taste” of water. I don’t think that water really has a taste unless it comes from a swamp, but I tried to entice her with all sorts of fruit plopped into each glass to encourage her to drink. Sometimes it worked. Sometimes it didn’t. I, personally, add lemon wedges to my water. Cucumber is also good.

My Texas ancestors will never give up their sweet tea, and I’ll never quit drinking coffee, but these don’t really cut it as far as summer hydration. I’m not telling you to quit drinking your coffee and tea, heaven forbid, but rather, just don’t substitute them for water. Sorry.

Eat Juicy

Summer is the time for my favorite fruits and veggies: watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew melons, strawberries, peaches, cucumbers, and bell peppers. Keep these handy for snacking. It’s okay to gorge a little. Especially on watermelon. I LOVE watermelon.

How to Tell if I Need More Water

Dehydration is nothing to mess with. The goal is to keep hydrating to avoid getting to that point. According to experts, by the time you feel thirsty, your body has probably lost about 1% of its water. At 2% loss, you will feel the signs of dehydration:



dry mouth





Your body is sending an SOS signal if you get to this point. Listen to it.

Another way to tell if you are hydrated is to check the color of your pee. If your urine is pale-to-clear yellow, you are doing a good job with your hydration regime. But if you are dehydrated, it will be a much darker yellow.

So bottoms up on the water bottles, Wimpy Girl! The only thing we want you to miss out on this summer is other people’s drama. I’ll drink to that!

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This work by Anel “Pookie” Ryan is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.

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