Tips To Keep Children Hydrated During Summer
Don’t wait for your children to tell you they’re thirsty before offering them water, experts say. Instead, offer them water and other hydrating foods and beverages throughout the day, particularly in the summer when more liquids are needed to stay healthy.
By the time children are thirsty, they’re already at least 3 percent dehydrated. And water does far more than slake thirst. Water is a cooling mechanism, it transports fluids and nutrients, helps with digestion, helps with cognitive function and maintains a healthy weight.
The amount of water a child needs to stay hydrated and healthy may surprise you. Teenagers need as much as adults, eight to 11 cups, while even toddlers aged 1 to 3 should have four cups of fluids a day. Use a rule of thumb of 2 to 3 ounces per day per pound of body weight, to a maximum of 8 to 10 cups per day. Water is not needed for infants under 6 months of age, and babies under 1 year can stay hydrated with breast milk or formula.
It’s particularly important to make sure active children are getting their fill of water. Make sure they drink 30 minutes or so before an activity, and then every 20 minutes during the activity, especially during the summer months. While doctors advise against sugary drinks, they do say that a sports beverage containing electrolytes is okay during prolonged, vigorous exercise. Aside from complaints of thirst, it can be hard to tell when a child is dehydrated. Some signs could be decreased or dark urine, dizziness and lethargy.
Parents can ensure that their children get their recommended intake of fluids with these tips:
It doesn’t have to be water – many fruits and vegetables have a very high water content.
- Fruits contain high water content and good amount of carbohydrates. This water level is very helpful to keep Children hydrated. The best choices include summer fruits like watermelon, cantaloupe, strawberries, pineapple, cranberries, peaches, raspberries, and oranges. Try to keep these fruits handy and serve as is or in the form of bites with chocolate sauce or other treats.
- Vegetables are also a good source to keep Children hydrated. The toppers on the list are lettuce and cucumber, celery, zucchini, green cabbage, broccoli, tomato, and radish. Some other hydrating foods include green peas, carrots, and white potatoes. If your Children like it as a juice, then vegetable juices are a great way to pack in the veggies.
- Coconut water contains natural properties like vitamins, minerals, sugars, vitamin C, and electrolytes. While out in the sun, coconut water is the most handy and healthy as well.
- Flavored Waters: There is a wide variety of flavored waters on the market these days. There are surely some flavors that will appeal to your Children. However, avoid those loaded with heavy sugars. Sugar slows down the absorption of fluids. Freeze berries or cranberries into ice cubes, or infuse water with fresh fruit, herbs or vegetables such as lemon, mint, watermelon or orange. Even adding unflavored soda to water makes it more of a treat – “bubbles” without the calories. It is recommended to be using sugar-free drink mixes. Also, make sure that you do not overload their system with artificial sweeteners. A drink or two per day with a sweetener is fine, but consider other options after that.
Make your own popsicles for a fluid-rich treat. Puree fruit or use no-sugar-added fruit juice and pour into freezer molds.
Make sipping fun. Let your children pick out their own drinking cups or travel bottles in their favorite colors or decorated with their favorite characters. Buy a set of crazy straws. Invest in ice cube trays that make ice in fun shapes. Be prepared. Invest in an assortment of reusable travel bottles and keep them filled and in the fridge so you can grab them any time you head out for a walk, bike ride or car trip. Make sure to use BPA free bottles.
Children Hydration Pack: Things to consider when picking a Children hydration pack. Looks – Let’s be honest, most Children want a hydration pack not for the water but for the cool factor. All the packs we’ve listed here are pretty styling, but you might want to give your Child final say. Choosing a hydration pack is fun. Reservoir Size– This refers to how much water the pack can carry. All the packs we’ve listed hold 1.5 liters which is just about right for most Children. Pre-schoolers can probably survive on a half-filled pack. Older Children going for longer rides (over 2 hours) might consider graduating to a small adult pack. Total Capacity: The larger the capacity, the more stuff it can fit. This is a double-edged sword. Children love “stuff” and it is nice for them to be able to carry their own jacket and a snack (or three). That said, the more stuff you can fit in the pack, the heavier and more cumbersome it becomes. Still not sure which of these packs is best for your child? Here’s a simple comparison chart to help you choose. http://rascalrides.com/the-best-Children-hydration-packs/
Make sure water is easily accessible for little ones. If they can’t reach the sink or the water tap in your refrigerator, set up an easy-to-use water dispenser and a few cups in a place where they can reach it.
Create a reminder system for drinking water. This could be a chart on the refrigerator that children can mark each time they have a serving of water, or, if you’re out and about, a timer set on your phone to remind the family that it’s time to take a drink.
In addition to all the above mentioned tips, precautions, and ways to keep your child hydrated, it is important to protect your child from excessive exposure to heat and sun. Also, monitor them as they play. Keep summer happy time for your Children by keeping them healthy.
STAY SAFE, HAVE FUN! Have a great summer! Please talk about these tips with your children and ask friends and parents to do the same. Then enjoy the summer and remember to keep having fun.