water-wave

Summer Hydration

My family loves summer outdoor living. We love the bike rides, days at the pool, hikes into the mountains and long, hot days.  However, one problem I struggle with in summer is keeping my kids hydrated.

Proper hydration is vital to support the following biological functions:

body temperature regulation

cushion joints

protects organs and tissues

waste removal

delivery of nutrient to oxygen and nutrients to cells

Water is also very important in preventing constipation, and we all know what an ordeal that is with kids.

We lose water naturally through sweat, breathing, urine and feces.   When it heats up, we tend to need more water. So summer time means we need to make a big effort to get our kids drinking water.

How much water do our kids actually need?

The Institute of National Academies has outlined a rough guide to water consumption for children.

Age                         Gender                        Total Water/day

4-8 years Girls and boys 1.3L / 44 oz
9-13 years Girls 2.1L / 71 oz
Boys 2.4L / 81 oz
14-18 years Girls 2.3L / 78 oz
Boys 3.3L / 112 oz

 

Some of the signs of dehydration to watch out for include:

Headaches

Fatigue

Light headedness

Crankiness

Poor concentration

Decreased physical performance

 

Thirst is not a good indicator of hydration and prevention is always the best option, so here are few tips to keep your kids fully hydrated:

Use cute water bottles, cups or straws- presentation makes such a difference with kids

 

Take water with you when you go out

Create a habit of regular drinking throughout the day even when they are not thirsty

Get them to drink a glass of water before they go outside to play

Add fresh fruit and herbs to make water more tasty to them

When playing sport, make sure they drink water at every break.

Be a good example

If your kids drink juice, water it down

 

Water is the best option. It is cheap, prevents dental decay, and avoids nasties such as sugar, high fructose corn syrup and artificial colors and flavors. An 8 oz cup of apple juice will give your kids a whopping 6 teaspoons of sugar, and a 12 oz can of soda will give your kids almost 10 teaspoons of sugar. Both of these sugar levels exceed the recommended daily maximum added sugar content for children.

 

However not all kids love water, especially if they drink soda or juice regularly. High water content fruit and vegetables can also help with hydration and can be a much more fun and effective way of increasing your kids fluid intake.

These include:

watermelon (92 percent water)

grapefruit and strawberries (around 90 percent water)

celery and radishes (95 percent water)

cucumbers (96 percent water)

spinach and peppers (92 percent water)

Fruit and vegetables can also be easily incorporated into popsicles which can be fun and healthy. Just pop the fruit and veggies into the blender, with a bit of water, coconut milk, coconut water or some KidzShake and your kids will be very happy. Here is a recipe for PineMango Coconut Popsicles that your kids will love.

 

 




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