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It's Like A Heat Wave! How to Beat The Heat

Baby, it’s hot outside! If the temperature is climbing in your neck of the woods, here are three simple things you can do that can not only help you keep your cool, but stay healthy in the process:

1) Drink up! Staying adequately hydrated is the best first defense against the ill effects of dehydration. Have a drink with each meal or snack, preferably something nutrient rich like skim or 1% milk or 100% fruit juice; water, seltzer, or club soda with a splash or two of 100% fruit juice are also healthful choices. One drink = 8 ounces, or one cup’s worth. All fluids (with the exception of alcoholic beverages OR too many caffeinated ones) will help  you stay hydrated, but the options mentioned will do so while providing nutrients, relatively few calories and no added sugar.

2) Load up on fresh fruits and veggies. Many fruits and veggies have a high water content to keep your body hydrated; aim for about 4.5 cups in total each day. Have about 1 cup with each meal/snack–if you eat five times a day, you’ll more than meet your daily fruit and veggie quota. Berries, melons, citrus fruits, leafy greens, peppers, onions and tomatoes are some examples that are relatively low in calories and high in nutrients, so throw them in (where appropriate) when you make smoothies, salads, cold soups, cold/warm pasta dishes, or of course you can add fresh fruit atop low-fat yogurt or cold whole grain cereal.

3) Monitor yourself. You’ll know you’re hydrated if your urine is pale in color. Sometimes if you take certain vitamin or mineral supplements or medications, you’re urine changes color. In that case, you’ll know you’re hydrated if you find yourself going to the bathroom at least ever 2 or 3 hours, and if your skin is moist, not dry or cracked.

For more info about staying hydrated and meeting your daily fluid needs, check out my YouTube videos. And please check out my RD pal Samantha Heller’s tips for avoiding heatstroke:

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About The Author

Elisa Zied is a nationally recognized and award-winning health and nutrition expert, author, speaker, and spokesperson. A trusted source of food, nutrition, and health information, Elisa has garnered millions of media impressions, lending her expertise and real-world perspective to dozens of TV shows, web sites, news organizations and magazines. She’s the author of four nutrition books. An avid walker, she loves motivating others to #moveitorloseit. A book lover, she recently earned a certificate in children’s literature from Stony Brook Southampton and is currently working on several young adult novels. You can find her previous Food, Fitness & Fiction posts here and connect with her on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

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