Best Ways to Hydrate
Water - Plain water is the best way to hydrate, no second guessing necessary.
Milk - In addition to calcium and vitamin D, milk contains protein to keep you fueled on even the hottest of days, something water can’t do.
Fruit-Infused Water - infusing your water with fruit is a healthy way to add flavor without adding sugar.
Fruit Juice - Fruit juice contains about 85 percent water, which makes it super hydrating (make sure you’re picking 100 percent fruit juice). The vitamins within natural fruits are also healthy. Be mindful of the sugar content, though, as juices can be packed with added sugars, which can inhibit hydration. If you’re drinking a lot of fruit juice, water it down.
Watermelon - OK, so this isn’t a drink…but every time you eat watermelon, you’re retaining 92 percent of the liquid you’re eating. That’s better than fruit juice!
Sports Drinks - The electrolytes in sports drinks can make hydration more effective. (Not to be too gross, but you know how sweat’s kind of salty? You want to add that back into your body.)
Teas – Caffeine-free and herbal teas are great, especially if it’s just an infusion of leaves in hot water. It doesn’t matter whether it’s herbal, black, green, or chamomile; hot or cold—tea is just about as hydrating as water. Tea is also packed with antioxidants. While the best option might be to avoid caffeine in general (it’s a diuretic, meaning it dehydrates!), drinking even regular tea in moderation will help you get to that daily 8 “glasses.”
Worst Ways to Hydrate
Soda - Soft drinks often contain caffeine, which is a culprit for dehydration; tons of sugar and sodium; and it’s bad for your bones and teeth too.
Beer - Consuming any kind of liquor removes water from your tissues, meaning you have to drink even more water to offset the effects.
Wine and liquor - Any alcoholic drink over 10 percent alcohol strength is a dehydrator, which means more of the liquid will leave your system than be absorbed.
Hot Cocoa - One cup of hot chocolate contains more sugar and calories than a can of soda, dehydrating your system.
Coffee - In moderation, coffee isn’t too bad, but once you go past that second cup, your body really starts to suffer. Drinking more than 200-300 milligrams of caffeine—the amount in two to three cups of coffee—has been shown to lead to dehydration.
Energy Drinks - Packed with caffeine, fake sugars, and complicated chemicals, energy drinks are not the best way to get your hydration fix.