I know how important it is to stay hydrated and I try to sip water all day, but sometimes I fall behind. So I also try to eat foods, such as cucumbers or strawberries, that can contribute to my fluid intake, helping to prevent the headaches and sluggishness caused by dehydration. Another good reason to eat water? Research shows that eating foods that are full of water helps keep you satisfied on fewer calories. (Interestingly enough, drinking water alongside foods doesn’t have the same effect.) This includes soup, of course, and also juicy fruits and vegetables. These are four of my favorites:
Cucumbers: At 95 percent water content, a cup of cucumber slices is nearly as thirst-quenching as a glass of water. Cucumbers also provide a little fiber and some vitamin C (about 6 percent of the Daily Value per cup). Don’t limit your cucumber consumption to tossing slices into green salads; get inspired to make refreshing cucumber recipes: dips, soups, and—yes!—pickles.
Salad Greens: Part of the reason that 2 cups of salad greens has fewer than 15 calories is that greens are more than 90 percent water. They are also packed with nutrients, such as folate, vitamin C, fiber and the antioxidant beta carotene, which helps keep your eyes and skin healthy. Plus, having a salad for lunch (or dinner) is a great way to bang out a couple of veggie servings.
Strawberries: Strawberries deliver the most vitamin C of all berries and also provide folate, a B vitamin that’s essential for the healthy growth of new cells. And, since they’re 91 percent water, they’ll contribute significantly toward your overall fluid intake. Eat them straight up or try them in a new strawberry recipe: they’re special in everything from salads to baked goods.
Watermelon: Summer will be here before we know it—and with it comes sweet, juicy watermelon. Ninety-two percent water (hence the name), watermelon is a good source of vitamin C and, when it’s red (some are orange or yellow), also has lycopene, an antioxidant that may help protect against heart disease and some types of cancer. Enjoy fresh wedges (go ahead and see how far you can spit the seeds) or, better yet, get creative with watermelon recipes.
What do you eat and drink to stay hydrated? Tell us what you think below.