Tips for Staying Hydrated When You're Sick

Tips for Staying Hydrated When You're Sick

Whether you have a common cold, virus or infection, doctors' orders always include an essential tip: "stay hydrated" or "drink lots of fluids!" There's a reason why. Drinking water helps to flush out toxins and keep your body working optimally. And on the opposite end, dehydration can worsen symptoms and extend the time you're sick.

Before you stock up on fluids, there's one thing you need to know: all beverages are not equal when it comes to keeping you hydrated. 

We’ve put together a list of tips for staying hydrated when you're sick. Check it out below!


Tips for Staying Hydrated When You're Sick


1. Drink purified water

This is the most basic tip, by far. But, it's important to keep it simple. Eight x 8-oz. glasses is the recommended amount of water you should drink daily, whether you're healthy or sick. Drinking water will help keep your temperature at bay and ensure you don’t dehydrate. Filtered water is the better option - free from contaminants and impurities. 


2. Eat ice

Essentially, this is the same tip as #1. But, if you want to switch it up or you're hot, chewing on frozen purified water is another way to hydrate. Crush up big cubes to reduce their size!


3. Snack on watery foods

If you have an appetite and feel like you need to eat something, fruit and veg that are high in water might be a good option. Foods like grapes, apples, cucumber and celery can be a helpful way to stay on top of your hydration efforts. 


4. Avoid sugar

Sports drinks, sodas, sweet teas, fruit juices - while you may be tempted to reach for your favorite sugary beverage, don't. Fluids high in fructose don't have electrolytes or nutrients to help your immune system and the sugar can actually increase inflammation in the body. 


5. Add fruits and/or vitamin supplements to your water

If you're bored with purified H2O and craving a sweet drink, try adding fruits or flavored vitamin supplements. See our favorite water infusion recipes for inspiration. 

Citrus fruits, such as lemons, limes and oranges, are packed with Vitamin C, which is important when you're not feeling well. Berries, like blueberries, strawberries and raspberries, have high levels of antioxidants and vitamins, which is also helpful. Plus, fruits and vegetables have natural sugars that can transform your water into a delicious beverage.

You can also purchase vitamin supplements like Emergen-C or Airborne to your water to make it taste flavorful and receive the vitamins your body needs. 


Tips for Staying Hydrated When You're Sick


6. Drink decaf tea

Caffeinated beverages are diuretic in nature - they dehydrate you. So, if you're looking for a hot beverage, caffeine-free teas are your best bet. Teas like mint, chamomile, ginger and turmeric all have great benefits when you're under the weather. Adding lemon and/or honey can also amp up the taste and provide additional health benefits.

Read: Water for Wellness: Support Your Immune System With This Infused Water Recipe


7. Make soup

Soups are another great way to stay hydrated when you’re sick. They add more fluids and important nutrients to your diet. Many soups, such as chicken noodle soup, are high in vitamins and nutrients. Plus, a warm soup (or hot tea) can ease sore throats or congestion, if you're experiencing these symptoms.

Note: Do not consume canned soups. Many canned soups are high in sodium, which can increase inflammation and blood pressure. Instead, opt for low-sodium soups or make your own.


8. Avoid alcohol

That's right, put the hot toddy down. Alcohol can impair your body from fighting sickness. Water, water, water - get those toxins flushed out and keep your temperature at bay. 

We hope this helps. Always consult your doctor for advice or if you have any concerns. Feel better soon!

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