The importance of staying hydrated on beach trips

June 2, 2021 ✨ Cattail Life

The importance of staying hydrated on beach trips

Swimming in the ocean is one of my favorite things for health.

It can actively improve your health and wellness with calming immersion of the water, and sunshine exposure. The elements activate the body's healing mechanisms and support healing for diseases, asthma, bronchitis, arthritis and also localized aches and pains.

Imagine a hot, sunny day at the beach, in and out of the ocean, the waves gently rocking you with the tide.

When you plan for a relaxing day at the beach with your toes in the sand, you’re expecting a good time.

Unfortunately, the nice memorable beach trip we all imagine can turn sour when dehydration enters the scene.

You’ll have a list of all the essential beach item:.

A Towel
A Hat…

...maybe even an umbrella, but will you remember to bring extra water?

Once you get out on the sand, water will be hard to come by - unless you’re right alongside a pier - but even then, they’ll typically offer you water when you dine in their establishment. Gotta break it to you, consuming water just during your meal is not going to be enough!

Say it with me, “Dehydration is not my friend!”

Headaches, vomiting, increased heart rate, passing out…

Certainly not the peaceful, relaxing, memorable day you were hoping for!

Let’s look at a couple ways you lose water when spending the day at the beach.

  • You lose water by the sun heating your skin - typically resulting in sweating.
  • By the breeze causing evaporation of water from your hot skin.
  • Swimming in the ocean causes your body to lose water.
  • Inevitably, you’re going to swallow some of the ocean water.

Let’s talk about that last one for a minute.

Let’s say you’re taking in a lot of ocean water.

Janelle learning to surf circa 2006

Salt water contains a much higher concentration of salt than your body requires to survive, and in fact a higher concentration than it can safely handle. When your body detects excess salt in your bloodstream your kidneys kick into overdrive to filter and remove the salt through the passage of urine.

However, the kidneys require a good deal of water in order to process a small amount of water. As your kidneys continue to create excess urine to dilute the salt, if you’re not replenishing your fluid intake with clean, fresh water, you will become dehydrated.

When you’re basking in the greatness of a day at the beach, you’re in and out of the ocean and your skin is wet – you likely won’t notice the symptoms of dehydration.

So, to prevent your wonderful beach day memories from turning sour, let’s be proactive with hydration, yes? Yes.

Steps for Preventing Dehydration

  1. Be sure to drink water early in the day to prepare your body, then continue to drink water every 15 minutes in small amounts.
  2. Instead of filling your cooler with energy drinks (that contain too much sugar and caffeine) or sodas (also loaded with sugar), fill ‘er up with water! Even though, yes, to some, it lacks “taste”, pack the water. Not only will it help keep you hydrated and help you have that wonderful day at the beach you had imagined, it’ll also help keep you in good spirits and is incredibly refreshing on a hot summer day – even if it’s not your go-to.
  3. Avoid being in direct sunlight for extended periods of time. Take your own shade to the beach so you can get a break from the sun.
  4. Alcohol is a fairly popular beverage to take to the beach, however, it’s also highly dehydrating! If alcohol is something you enjoy at the beach, then avoid it during the hottest part of the day from 10 AM to 4 PM.
  5. Drink plenty of fresh, cool water.
  6. Snack on fruits and veggies with a high water content… ex: watermelon, apple, pineapple and oranges.
  7. Avoid Ice Cold Drinks. This might sound counterintuitive but ice cold drinks actually constrict the blood vessels in the stomach causing the fluid absorption rate to be reduced. That being said – “cool fluids” can be absorbed faster.

Add these simple steps to your beach routine and you’ll have a successfully hydrated adventure. For more information on staying hydrated, download my Hydration Made Easy for simple-to-follow tips and tricks!

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