Find it hard to drink eight glasses of water? Well, some experts are saying you don’t have to. As long as you’re drinking some sort of beverage, you’re hydrating your body. Well, is that so?
I believe that–if we go with the logic that drinking something beats drinking nothing. But is it really true that drinking anything hydrates you from inside out? Are there any beverages out there that might actually do the opposite?
From what I’ve learned, some beverages are actually weak hydrators, and a few are dehydrators. Let’s look at five today. Because they’re dehydrators, these drinks can cause our skin to become drier too.
Tea is commonly said to dehydrating because it is a caffeinated beverage that depletes our body of fluid. However, this claim has been dismissed as an urban myth (source: BBC News). Personally, I do find that even drinking a cup of tea in the morning makes me thirsty and I need to visit the toilet almost immediately.
So despite the health benefits, I still think it’s best to drink tea in moderation. One or two cups a day won’t have much effect but if you tend to drink three or more, chances are you may feel you need more water to compensate for the thirst. I find drinking green tea has the same effect even though it is often said to be beneficial for our health and skin.
I do not drink coffee often enough to conclude if it is the same as tea but coffee is also known to be diuretic and is often said to have a dehydrating effect as well. Drinking caffeinated beverages on the whole depletes the body of fluids. You’ll end up needing to drink even more water . But studies have generally failed to support the common notion that ordinary consumption of caffeinated beverages contributes significantly to dehydration.
There are definitely differences in the ability of different people to metabolize caffeine. In general, however, low to moderate amounts of caffeine consumption do not appear to increase water loss very significantly.
By “low to moderate,” we mean a consumption level that keeps caffeine under 250 milligrams. A “standard” 8-ounce cup of coffee would usually contain at least half this amount, and in many cases would contain this entire amount. And a large, specialty coffee (like a 16-ounce “grande”) might contain over twice this level. (Source: WHFoods)
But then again, caffeine is also known to be a stimulant that increases heart rate and cardiac output. An increased cardiac output do send more blood to the kidneys, causing an increased amount of urine excretion, leading to the dehydration. Hence, it is still best to drink coffee in moderation.
Any sort of soda or soft drinks can cause dehydration because they contain sodium, sugar and caffeine. Carbonated water has dissolved carbon dioxide in its composition, which is also highly acidic.
Anyway, whether or not they cause drier skin, these are very unhealthy source of beverage and should be consumed only occasionally. When consumed too frequently, such beverages can contribute to fine lines and wrinkles.
This is definitely a diuretic that draws water from the body and dehydrates the skin. If you had a lot to drink the night before, you’ll most probably notice your skin looking kind of dry with irregular skin tone the morning after.
When I was drinking a glass of Korean wine nightly one season, I realized that it made me feel dehydrated. In the end, I gave it up despite some of the health and beauty claims.
So consuming alcohol, including beer, should be regulated. Drinking them occasionally is fine but drinking them too frequently would be problematic.
Some people suggest drinking chocolate in place of tea and coffee. They suggest that cocoa is healthier and does not contain as much caffeine.
While it does not contain as much caffeine, it still contains some and that’s why it is still best to limit consumption. In addition, most people drink chocolate with sugar which makes it doubly bad for the skin. But I suppose if you’re drinking just a cup a day and not drinking tea or coffee, that amount is absolutely fine.
5 drinks to hydrate
As with most other experiences, the effects of taking such food and beverages may differ with individuals. However, I think the saying that “too much of anything isn’t a good thing” holds truth. Like even drinking water is said to be good, drinking too much of it may pose a health hazard for some people!
So balance up. Drink more of beverages that will hydrate you instead. Here are five from the top of my head:
I’ll rather drink water any time. I still think it’s the best hydrator. I’m not sure if I drink up to eight glasses a day as I don’t keep track but I do drink a lot, with one or two cups of tea in between. If I’m out, I’ll still order a glass of warm water or a cup of warm barley drink. I avoid soda and I don’t drink coffee at all.
2. Barley water
If you’re someone with problems drinking good old plain water, you might want to consider drinking barley water. I understand there is no side effects but I’ll not drink beyond two glasses of barley a day.
3. Lemon water
Alternatively, try infusing your water with lemon or some fruits. I’ve also seen some bottles that allow you to use a lemon with your water at Watsons not too long ago.
4. Fruit-infused water
Or look around Pinterest. There are many recipes for fruit-infused water. They’re pretty to look at and definitely easy to try out. I haven’t tried them because I’m good with drinking just water.
5. Fresh juice
Fruit juice is good but make sure you’re not drinking the commercially packaged ones unless they do not come with sugar or preservatives. If you’ve an issue with sugar in your body, then fresh fruit juice should be taken in moderation because of the fructose in fruit juice tend to be high considering the amount of fruits used to make a glass of juice.
What do you drink most daily? Do you have a problem with drinking water? How do you overcome the problem?
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