1. Drink More Water
In Arizona, people tend to walk around in a constant state of dehydration. Due to the hot and dry weather, water is continuously evaporating through your skin. The simplest and most obvious way to maintain hydration is to drink more water. Most people are a bit shocked when they discover how much fluid they actually need. The general recommendation of 8 glasses of water per day is for people who live in a temperate climate and are totally sedentary. In Arizona the average person needs close to a gallon of water per day to stay properly hydrated.
People tend to think that it’s impossible to drink a gallon of water a day. These are often the same people who have three cups of coffee in the morning, a couple of diet soft drinks with lunch, and alcoholic beverages during and after dinner. If you substitute water, you’ll have no problem drinking a gallon a day.
2. Drink Before You Feel Thirsty
One of the first signs of dehydration is felling thirsty, so if you wait until your thirsty to drink, it’s too late, you’re already dehydrated. Other signs of moderate dehydration are low grade headache and fatigue. Severe dehydration is accompanied by nausea, chills, and feeling light headed. Your body depends on water for survival.
Every cell, tissue and organ in your body needs water to function correctly. Water makes up more than half of your body weight. Your body uses water to maintain its temperature, remove waste and lubricate joints. Water is essential for good health.
3. Carry A Water Bottle With You Everywhere You Go
Any time you leave the house, take a water bottle with you and sip it periodically throughout the day, refilling the bottle when needed. This habit will keep you properly hydrated all day long and is better than filling up on water suddenly and becoming bloated. Take a water bottle to work and drink all day. Be sure to keep a bottle with you at all times.
If you’re “working out” in Arizona in the summer, you may find you actually need more than a gallon of water per day to stay properly hydrated. Drinking plenty of fluids is essential to fitness and athletic performance. Not staying hydrated, on the other hand, can hinder your performance and negatively impact your health.
4. Avoid Caffeine & Alcohol
Caffeinated beverages, such as soft drinks, coffee and tea are diuretics and increase urination which leads to dehydration. Decreasing or cutting out caffeinated beverages altogether will help maintain proper hydration levels. Remember that alcoholic beverages are very dehydrating so if you choose to consume them you will need to drink extra water to stay properly hydrated.
One way to tell if you are properly hydrated is by looking at the color of your urine. Generally speaking, the clearer the urine, the better hydrated you are. A pale yellow color usually indicates good hydration, while a medium to dark yellow indicates dehydration.
5. Do Not Drink Ridiculously Excessive Amounts Of Water
Believe it or not it is possible to drink too much water if you begin to drink it excessively (generally in excess of 2 gallons) without replenishing your electrolytes. Doing so can cause water intoxication. You’ll feel sluggish, bloated, even a little dizzy. This occurs because excessive water causes lower sodium in your blood. Water keeps coming in, but because of a lack of electrolytes, the blood sodium level drops too low, which throws off your bodies ability to properly regulate itself. In very extreme cases this condition can lead to death.
The best solution if you are consuming in excess of 2 gallons of water per day is to increase your sodium intake with sea salt. A high quality sea salt will contain a full spectrum of minerals and will help replenish your sodium levels. Another good solution is to occasionally replenish your electrolytes with an electrolyte replacement powder that you can mix right into your water.