By: Eric C. Sharer, MPH, RD, CDN
Wildwood Dietitian and Adult HEAL Co-Chair

As the weather is getting warmer, the Wildwood Healthy Eating Active Living (HEAL) Committee has started reminding Wildwood about important summer safety, including hydration. Staying hydrated is important to make sure the body is able to work properly. Not hydrating properly can increase the risk of becoming dehydrated, which can include symptoms such as fatigue, headache, confusion, weakness and more serious symptoms such as fainting, organ failure, and even death.

Many people struggle with staying hydrated during the summer because they do not like the taste of water. While drinking water is important to help stay hydrated, you can count any fluids that you consume towards hydration – unless they are high in sugar or contain caffeine. Both large amounts of sugar and/or caffeine can cause dehydration. Other beverages that can help hydrate you include sparkling water or seltzer, 100% fruit juice mixed with water/sparkling water/seltzer, adding fresh fruits or vegetables to your drinks, non-dairy or dairy milk and milk products such as almond/soy/oat/cashew milk or yogurt, smoothies, etc. Certain fruits and vegetables can also contain large amounts of fluid and can help with hydration, including grapes, berries, watermelon and other melons, cooked broccoli and canned fruit packed in juice.

Work to include a variety of sources of fluids into your diet throughout the day to help maximize your hydration! Below is a fun and delicious smoothie recipe to liven your taste buds but also help you stay hydrated this summer.

Easy Strawberry Banana Smoothie

Recipe adapted from: http://thatgirlcookshealthy.com/easy-strawberry-banana-smoothie-vegan-dairy-free

Ingredients

  • 1 cup of frozen strawberries or other frozen fruit of choice
  • 1 large banana, peeled and frozen or use a fresh peeled banana and add a few ice cubes
  • 1 cup of non-dairy milk such as soy, oat, almond, cashew, hemp milk, etc.

Optional Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of baby kale, mixed greens or baby spinach
  • 1 tbsp. peanut, almond, pumpkin or sunflower butter
  • 1-3 tsp. ground flaxseed, chia seeds, unsweetened coconut flakes or unsweetened cocoa powder
  • Use coconut water instead of the non-dairy milk.
  1. Pour liquid into blender.  Add any optional ingredients if using. Add banana and frozen strawberries.
  2. Cover blender and blend until smooth.