Whilst a human being can last without food for 3 weeks, it is impossible to survive longer than 3 days without water. This is because at least 60% of the body is made up of water and is involved in many important functions, shutting down if water is not consumed. These functions include flushing out waste out of the body, regulating body temperature through sweating and respiration, and helping brain function. It’s extremely important, to say the least.
However, most of us are aware that we don’t consume nearly enough. According to one study, 77% of those that took part said they did not consume enough water on a daily basis to meet their health needs. This can come down to a whole host of reasons, with a busy lifestyle, lacking access to a water bottle or distaste for water itself being some of them. You may love us or hate us for this, but we’ve come up with a list of hydrating alternatives to water, meaning you may no longer have an excuse. Find out what you can do to stay hydrated - and we promise, drinking water is not included.
1. Eat hydrating foods
On average, 20% of hydration comes from the food we eat. Fruit and vegetables are full of water, meaning you can stay hydrated whilst just having a healthy snack. In addition to being excellent sources of hydration, vegetables tend to be low on calories and jam-packed with a wide array of essential vitamins and minerals. Read our list of the most hydrating food options out there!
One hydrating food is oatmeal. Oats absorb the water or milk they’re cooked in, so they are both a hydrating and hearty option. Mix in some berries or chia seeds (also good at absorbing liquid!) for extra hydration.
2. Broth-based soups
Broth-based soups, like minestrone or miso, are an immediate nutritious hydration boost. Not only is it an extremely healthy option, broth is also a natural way to replenish the body’s electrolytes due to containing a high amount of sodium. This means it hydrates your body whilst retaining the hydration at the same time. It’s also a great way to curb cravings if you’re struggling to get to the next meal without eating.
3. Give carb alternatives a go
When it comes to meal planning, ditch carbs such as pasta and opt for hydrating alternatives. Zucchini noodles are a great choice, containing about 95% water. Paired with a tomato or wild garlic sauce, it’s a hydrating meal that will make you feel fabulous.
Cauliflower or broccoli rice is also a great alternative to normal rice. Cut cauliflower or broccoli into small chunks, place in your food processor and blitz until it resembles the texture of rice. Stir-fry with protein or vegetables for around 5 minutes!
4. Coconut water
Whilst it has water in the name, we’re not tricking you! Coconut water is a tasty and hydrating alternative to water, and it’s loaded with potassium and electrolytes. Potassium helps keep fluid and electrolyte levels balanced, especially during exercise. As there is more potassium than sodium in coconut water, it’s also been shown to lower blood pressure in people with hypertension (high blood pressure). However, make sure you’re drinking pure coconut water, and that you’re consuming it in moderation!
Interested in more alternatives to water? Here are the 5 most hydrating drinks to consume in a heatwave!
5. Avoid the booze!
Alcohol can severely dehydrate you! It causes your body to remove fluids from your blood through your system at a much quicker rate than other liquids. Whilst it can be a nice treat at the weekend, make sure to rehydrate yourself so you don’t suffer the next day.
Don’t mind the taste of water but still looking for ways to make it more exciting? Check out our 4 different hacks you can try.