A great starting point for great health: staying hydrated! Hydration affects all facets of your wellbeing, from your digestive system to your skin to your mood. While reaching for a glass of water is always a good idea, you can also snack on these hydrating foods to stay hydrated and healthy this summer.
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Water is the #1 nutrient in our diet and it’s what makes up much of our bodies. Yep! And your brain is 75% water so when you are dehydrated, your brain actually SHRINKS and your brain function can dwindle (1)! Yikes. Being dehydrated can even affect your mood and in severe circumstances, lead to organ failure.
Signs of dehydration, according to Mayo Clinic:
Infant or young child
- Dry mouth and tongue
- No tears when crying
- No wet diapers for three hours
- Sunken eyes, cheeks
- Sunken soft spot on top of skull
- Listlessness or irritability
- Extreme thirst
- Less frequent urination
- Dark-colored urine
As you sleep, you lose a few pounds of water weight from perspiration, and through the act of breathing. That water needs to be restored in the morning, and it’s important to continue drinking water throughout the day.
A good rule of thumb: if you're thirsty, you're already dehydrated, so stay ahead of it! Your ultimate goal should be to drink over 8 glasses of water, but to be a little more specific, you can use the following calculation:
Your weight in pounds, divided by 2. Then simply replace LBS with OZ.
For instance, if you’re 150 pounds divide that number by 2 = 75 pounds. Then change the pounds to oz, and you need about 75 oz of water a day, which is just under 9 1/2 8-oz cups.
A great way to make sure you stay hydrated is to drink 16 oz of water (2 cups) first thing when you wake up in the morning, then 2 cups before each meal. Drinking water before each meal can also lead to weight loss because it usually means less calorie consumption when you eat.
At MamaSezz, we love to eat foods that have high water content...like fruits and veggies! While you should still be enjoying your 8+ cups of water a day, add these 5 top water-concentrated foods to your day and stay healthy and hydrated all summer long.
1. Lettuce: 96% water
Leafy greens are essential for healthy digestion, bone health, and immunity support. And they're also great for weight loss as they're low in caloric density.
Our favorite way to enjoy lettuce is in a plant-based burger salad:
2 handfuls of leafy greens
6 sliced cherry tomatoes
⅓ diced avocado
¼ a cup of diced pickles
A few slivers of thinly sliced red onion
1 MamaSezz High Protein Burger, browned on each side
3 TBS of MamaSezz Awesome Sauce
2. Celery: 95% water
Celery is an anti-inflammatory food thanks to its high antioxidant count. It's also chock full of fiber, so celery can help your digestive system get up to speed. Some even claim that drinking 16 oz of freshly pressed celery juice first thing in the morning can cure kidney failure, skin diseases, and purify your system (2).
Our favorite celery recipe is this vegan ranch potato salad. (Bring to your next cookout — it will not disappoint!)
3. Cucumber: 95% water
Why list the benefits when we could hear them sung to us. But ok, we'll wax poetic any way: cucumbers are loaded with electrolytes, are great for digestion, and are almost all water.
Our favorite summer cucumber recipe is this easy cucumber beet salad:
1 cucumber, diced
1 boiled beet, diced
Top with oil-free sesame lemon dressing
4. Zucchini: 94% water
Similar to cucumber, zucchini is also a great source of antioxidants and fiber. And it's versatility makes it one of our favorite summer veggies. It can be used on the grill, spiralized into pasta, chopped raw into salad, or shredded onto a sandwich.
Our favorite way to use this versatile veggie is quite simple:
Use a peeler to shred it into wide, thin noodles, and layer on top of a grilled MamaSezz High Protein Burger, alongside your other favorite toppings.
5. Watermelon: 92% water
If the name didn't give it away, watermelon is a great hydrating food for summer. Although watermelon may seem like it’s strictly water, sugar and fiber, these brightly colored fruits are packed with important nutrients like vitamin A, B6, C, and other important antioxidants. Watermelon contains lycopene, which helps our bodies protect against UV rays (talk about the perfect summer snack!).
Our favorite way to enjoy watermelon is this spicy summer salad recipe!
- Hydration is key to your overall well-being, affecting everything from your digestion and weight to your mood and skin!
- Most people need at least 8-8oz glasses of water a day -- and you can eat hydrating foods on top of that to stay well.
- Our favorite hydrating plant-based foods for summer: lettuce, celery, cucumber, zucchini, watermelon.
Caroline is a plant-based chef, recipe designer, and whole food plant-based nutrition educator, with a Plant-Based Nutrition Certificate from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies.