Quench Your Thirst
Anna Albritton, MS, RD, LD shares her food philosophy and goals for Diabetes Strength Members
Hot, humid summer days have recently settled in to Georgia. Whether you choose to do your Diabetes Strength workouts inside or outdoors, hydration is ever important during the smoldering summer months in the South! This holds especially true for individuals with diabetes, where dehydration can lead to an increase in blood sugar levels.
Quench Your Thirst with Water
When choosing beverages to stay hydrated, it’s important to think of things that are caffeine-free and have no carbohydrate content. Plain or sparkling water will always be your best bet. Can’t stand the taste (or lack thereof) of water? Try adding lemon, cucumber, strawberries, or mint to infuse a little flavor into your water.
Skip the Sports Drinks
Sports drinks are designed for individuals who are exercising for extended periods of time, expending extensive amounts of energy and losing significant amounts of sweat. Even more, these sweetened drinks are often highly concentrated with sodium and carbohydrate. For individuals who are working out 30 minutes to an hour a day, water alone does wonders to rehydrate the body.
Steer Clear of Sugary and Caffeinated Beverages
Many “natural” sweetened beverages are full of calories, carbohydrates, and added sugar. Check nutrition labels and avoid these in your shopping cart! Beverages that include caffeine—coffee, unsweetened tea—are fine in moderation, but don’t count them towards hydrating your body. They aid in the opposite, promoting dehydration. As a rule of thumb, for every ounce of caffeinated beverage you consume, follow it with an equal amount of water to replace any fluid lost thanks to caffeine.
How Much is Enough?
Aim to consume no less than 8 cups of water a day, or 64 ounces. Increase this amount if you sweat a lot as you follow along with your Diabetes Strength workout. Seem like a lot of water? Try keeping a water bottle with you to sip on throughout the day, refilling each time you finish. You can also try tracking your consumption using an app or writing it down daily.