For decades now, we’ve been told to drink water. In school, we were taught to have eight glasses a day. As adults, we have been carrying around water bottles. There are even flavoring products to help folks who don’t like water drink it. It’s important to get your water!
Hydration keeps our bodies running smoothly. Water is over 50% of what makes us, so it has lots of roles in what makes us healthy. Water keeps our joints lubricated, keeps our body temperatures in check, protects our organs, and distributes nutrients. Without out, we are goners; with too little, we can have some serious health issues.
While adequate hydration is extremely integral to a healthy body, water is not the only way to hydrate. In fact, a lot of hydration comes from other sources. Most liquids we drink, including caffeinated beverages like coffee and tea, aid in hydration in some way. A lot of our hydration comes from what we eat, and certain foods are great for it.
In general, eating our vegetables is always a great thing. They are vital to getting a full bevy of vitamins, minerals, and micronutrients. Many of them are largely composed of water. The following vegetables are 90% (or more) composed of water, so they can be great additions to a well-hydrated body.
- Cucumbers have more water than any other solid food. Most people just think of them for salads, but there are tons of other culinary uses for cucumbers, including soups, pasta, pickles, and more.
- Tomatoes, as any fan of tomato sandwiches knows, are lovely and moist as well as flavorful. They are also insanely versatile in recipes; however, to get the most out of the moistness, it’s best to eat them fresh.
- Celery obviously has a massive moisture content. It’s also got a wonderful crunch that has it amongst the top vegetables to serve with dips. Celery performs beautifully in juices and drinks, as well as soups and fresh sauces.
- Radishes are an under-sung vegetable. In the US, they are typically relegated to a few slices in a garden salad, often pushed to the side at that. But, they are crunchy, spicy, and colorful. They make awesome pickles, raw chips, and kimchi.
- Greens are the go-to vegetable for serious nutrition, and included in that is hydration. Lettuce especially has a high moisture content, but kale, spinach, and cabbage do, too. Go for greens often and with gusto.
Obviously, fruits have a lot of moisture content. Fruit juices are a classic because of it. Many summertime fruits are especially good for hydrating us, and it’s the perfect time to be eating them.
- Watermelon has the clue right there in its name. Watermelons are fantastic for hydration. They are so light and flavorful. They are awesome in all sorts of drinks, and they can be used creatively in classic dishes, too.
- Cantaloupe, along with other similar melons, has a high water content. They are fantastic aside at breakfast, or they can be used as edible bowls for granola and yogurt.
- Strawberries are one of the first and best treats summer has to offer. They show up in late spring and delight us all. They are fine all on their own, but they make killer smoothies, sorbets, and sweet treats. They also play nicely in salads
- Peaches make the scene in mid-summer and take over the farmers’ markets. They smell so enticing, and a good bite of fresh peach is laden with juice. It’s easy to eat them fresh, but they are stars when put into pies, sauces, and pretty much anything.
Soup, in particular brothy soups, are mostly made of water, so they are basically like having something to drink in terms of hydration. Many of the watery fruits and vegetables above can be used to make cold soups in the summer. But, hot soups are just as hydrating.
Many medicinal mushrooms work well to make sipping soups, aka mushroom tea. Miso with a few spring onions is amazing as a side dish for East Asian food. Noodle soups are always crowd-pleasers. Even creamy soups get some serious hydrating done.
Drink That Water
All that said, it’s still important to drink water regularly, especially when exercising and relaxing (and sweating) out in the sun. Eating some helpful stuff will certainly help, but nothing hydrates quite the same as a glass of water.
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