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After weight loss surgery, how you fuel and care for your body makes a world of difference to your whole health. Staying hydrated, especially amid a hot summer, is important to your progress and your overall well-being.
While proper hydration is important for everyone, it’s especially true for bariatric surgery patients for whom dehydration is a common reason for hospital stays after surgery. Drinking enough fluids each day should be a top priority during your recovery and beyond.
That said, we’re here with some easy and practical tips to keep you hydrated during the warmer months and every day.
Water is the healthiest way to stay hydrated — at least 64 ounces per day will do the trick. You most likely won’t need electrolyte-based (or sports) drinks unless you’re exercising for more than 40 to 60 minutes at a time. If you do need a sports drink, make sure it’s no sugar added. During your workouts, be sure to slow down and take small sips to stay hydrated.
Be sure to drink something before, during and after exercising. Make a point to choose fresh fruit and vegetables as snacks — such as watermelon, celery and pineapple — that contain lots of water.
When you’re spending time outside, you should also avoid drinks that contain caffeine or alcohol since they dehydrate your body.
Keep Water Handy
Be sure to have a plan before you head out. Pack water bottles to bring with you and consider keeping them by the door where they’re easy to grab on your way out. Take frequent water breaks.
Planning your activities before and after the sun’s peak hours (between 10 am and 2 pm) can go a long way in making sure you stay cool and healthy.
Know the Signs of Dehydration
Humidity can make you sweat considerably more than usual, especially in the summer. It's important to stay properly hydrated to avoid the risk of heat exhaustion or heat stroke. Be sure to drink plenty of fluids before, during and after your time spent in the sun.
Mild dehydration can cause irritability, headache and fatigue, all of which can ruin your day. However, severe dehydration can be a medical emergency.
Learning to recognize the signs of severe dehydration can be lifesaving. They are:
- Dark urine
- Dry lips and mouth
- Slow reaction time
Get help immediately for signs of severe dehydration. For mild dehydration, find some shade or an indoor location to cool off and sip some water, slowly. Take it easy and continue to drink water until you feel better.
Make a Plan Before You Head Out
Just as you apply sunscreen to prevent sunburn, you can prevent dehydration and heat-related illness by taking steps to keep your fluids up. More ideas include:
- Avoid too much caffeine and alcohol
- Carry a water bottle
- Drink between meals
- Drink lots of fluids (especially water)
- Eat water-rich foods like watermelon and smoothies
- Give coconut water a try
- Hydrate first thing in the morning
If you want to learn more about how to prevent dehydration and keep you healthy on your weight loss journey, our dedicated team is here for you every step of the way.
Visit us at AdventHealthWeightLoss.com for more information.