Staying hydrated is crucial for everyone, but it's especially important for individuals managing Diabetes. Our bodies are composed of about 60 per cent water, making hydration a key factor in not only Diabetes management but also overall health. The need for water varies based on factors like age, gender, weight, diet, topography, weather, health status, and physical activity. In the summer, hydration becomes even more significant.
Hydration plays a pivotal role in maintaining health, particularly for those with diabetes. It helps regulate body temperature, especially in the heat of summer. By aiding the detoxification process, it helps flush out excess glucose and other waste from the body. Proper hydration also improves sleep quality, mood, cognitive functions, digestion, and immunity against viruses and infections. It enhances blood and oxygen circulation and can even aid in weight loss. Moreover, staying hydrated can help prevent the painful formation of kidney stones, a common issue among individuals with diabetes.
Natural Drink Choices
Opt for natural, hydrating drinks like coconut water post-exercise. Its electrolytes and minerals quickly replenish energy and hydration levels.
If you are bored of plain water, try infusing your water with natural organic flavours of mint, ginger, or lemon. This approach works well for both children and adults, making hydration more enjoyable.
Smart Exercise Timing
Engage in physical activities during cooler parts of the day, like early mornings or evenings, or in air-conditioned environments.
Diet Rich in Water Content
Incorporate water-rich fruits and vegetables into your diet. Cucumbers, berries, tomatoes, oranges, and lettuce are great options for snacks or light salads.
Don't hesitate to use hydration tracking apps or reminders to maintain adequate hydration throughout the day.
Beware of Sugary Drinks: Avoid sugary, flavored beverages that promise hydration but are loaded with sugar and preservatives.
Personalized water intake
Understand your body's specific water needs. Over hydration can be as harmful as dehydration. Seek advice from your healthcare provider for personalized recommendations.
Avoid Drinking Only When Thirsty
Relying solely on thirst might not be enough, especially for those on certain diabetes medications that can alter thirst perception.
Be Cautious with Cold Water
While tempting, excessively cold water can shock the system and should be consumed moderately.
Balanced Sodium Intake
While too much sodium is harmful, cutting it out entirely isn't beneficial either. Sodium plays a role in hydration, so aim for a balanced intake.
In conclusion, water is a simple yet essential component of managing diabetes effectively. Whether through drinking water, consuming hydrating foods, or using technology aids, maintaining hydration is vital. Remember, the quantity of water intake should be balanced - neither too much nor too little.
Ashlesha Jadhav is a lawyer by profession. She has had Type 1 Diabetes since last 17 years. She is a volunteer with the Blue Circle Diabetes Foundation