Not many of us understand the importance of good hydration. Whether you are a recreational gym-goer or a serious athlete, it’s vital that you get the right amount of water before, during, and after exercising. Water is needed to regulate your body’s temperature and facilitate joint lubrication. As you should know, sweetened energy drinks can contribute to tooth erosion and must be consumed in small amounts or none at all. Read on to discover some fantastic alternatives that can keep you hydrated without depending on energy drinks which are two-edged swords!
No matter what, you still need your eight glasses of water daily. Pure water is sufficient for most recreational athletes who engage in mild to moderate activity. If your sport or activity is intense and will leave you sweating excessively, you will need electrolytes in addition to the water you drink. Soluble sodium tablets are a great source of electrolytes and you can just drop one into your liter of water and you are good to go. Also, you may consider squeezing lemon or lime, or both, to add some zest to your drink!
Many people go crazy for this tropical drink, and it is for a good reason. Unlike energy drinks, coconut water is rich in potassium and low in carbohydrates. If you enjoy the unique taste of this drink, choose its unsweetened varieties as they are much more hydrating. The all-natural coconut beverage is best consumed after light exercises.
Why drink energy drinks when you can drink milk? Believe it or not, it has been proven that milk helps you rehydrate and recover after exercise better than sports drinks and along the way, even beating out water! So the next time you finish a workout, choose a carton of fat-free chocolate milk as your choice of fluid replacement.
Having trouble choosing a hydrating option? Try making your own smoothie with your favorite flavors into a single nutritionally-packed glass. When making these smoothies, try to use ingredients that are mostly fruits and vegetables. An awesome, must-try recommendation is a blueberry mint green smoothie. Blueberries, most notable for their eye-catching purple hues and antioxidant properties, are chock-full of delicious nutrients such as fiber, manganese as well as vitamins C and K.
Looking for a sweet treat before your workout session but want to avoid energy drinks? Try eating strawberries! Not only do they satisfy your sweet tooth, they have excellent rehydrating properties as well. Compared to other berries, their water content is more than 90%!
Watermelons are major contenders in the world of thirst quenchers. With “water” in front of its name, it is easy to guess that the fruit is made up of 92% water. Watermelons are also a great source of magnesium, calcium and salt, which is why it’s an excellent choice for rehydration.
This salad staple continues to retain its position at the No.1 spot on the list of water-logged vegetables and fruits. Unlike watermelons and strawberries, it is composed of 96% water. What’s more, cucumbers do not contain any cholesterol or saturated fat, and it is very high in iron, vitamin B6 and K.
Whether you choose to juice them or chew them or just drink them, the recommendations above make excellent rehydration alternatives. However, always keep in mind that the amount you should take depends on the intensity of your fitness activity and your body weight. In all cases, moderation will always benefit you!