If you’re feeling a little more parched than usual this February, Allie White has some helpful tips for making sure you’re getting — and staying — hydrated…
Recently — and much to my delight — I discovered a heating vent in my bathroom that had previously been hidden behind a shelf. After some rearranging, my bathroom instantly got cozier and getting out of the shower has been infinitely more enjoyable this winter. I can keep my pajamas next to vent so they’re nice and toasty; the toilet seat doesn’t make me want to cry in the middle of the night; the floor is noticeably warmer on my bare feet…it’s the best!
EXCEPT. Except for when it comes to my skin. Not that I spend that much time in my bathroom, but the hot, dry air coming out of the radiator is definitely impacting my already-dry-from-winter-weather skin. And it’s not just the air in my apartment; everywhere indoor spot I frequent is blasting the heat, further depleting the precious stores of hard-won moisture my body is stockpiling.
What’s more, cold weather also plays a part in dehydration as it tends to cause your body to move blood and fluid from your extremities to your core, which makes you pee more, which equals less water in your system. It can also decrease your thirst sensation so you’re not as likely to reach for your water bottle regularly.
If you too are feeling a little more parched than usual this February, might I suggest the following tips for making sure you’re getting — and staying — hydrated until the sun decides to show its beautiful face again?
So simple, yet so effective. Drinking more water is the first step to keeping yourself well-hydrated. There’s no hard and fast rule about how much water you should be drinking every day, but the general rule of thumb is at least eight 8-ounce glasses (or half a gallon). And opt for room temperature water; cold liquids are absorbed quicker by your body which means they’ll pass through your system quicker, too.
Eat fruits and vegetables.
Whenever you can, incorporate fresh produce into your diet, specifically fruits and vegetables that have high water content. Apples and pears are 80% water; broccoli, spinach and cauliflower are 91% water; winter citrus is 87% water; a whopping 96% of a cucumber is water. Not only will you get an extra dose of water with every bite, but you’ll also reap the benefits of all the vitamins and minerals packed into these wonders from nature.
Eat fruits and vegetables, part II.
Aside from produce that’s heavy on the water, you’ll also want to reach for potassium-rich fruit and veg like bananas, kale, Brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes as the mineral helps transport water through your body, even deep into your muscles. (That’s why people say to eat bananas to avoid muscle cramps!)
Stock up on stock.
I know bone broth is all the rage right now, but there’s a reason people swear by it. Broth-based soups — which, honestly, are all I want to eat in the winter — can be super-hydrating thanks to the water in the broth. Vegetable, lentil, minestrone…oh my!
Don’t overdo it on caffeine and booze.
Knowing what not to drink can be just as important as knowing what you should be putting into your body, and when it comes to winter dehydration, alcohol and caffeine definitely fall in into the former camp as they’re liquid dehydrators, as counterintuitive as that may seem.
Pay attention to your skin.
After doing all you can to hydrate your insides, don’t skimp on your skin. Find the right moisturizer for your skin’s needs. Incorporate hyaluronic acid into your skincare routine to lock in moisture. If you’re still using the same products that got you through summer, switch up your self-care routine to account for winter weather.
Now get out there and stay warm — and hydrated!