You’re probably very well-acquainted with the old adage of drinking six to eight eight-ounces glasses of water per day to stay hydrated. However, there’s more to keeping your body in tip-top shape than just guzzling H2O. In fact, carbs can be a huge help if you want stave off dehydration and replenish your body with key nourishment it needs.
Given that one in five people are dehydrated on any given day, chances are high that you should probably be upping your water consumption. However, you could drink H2O all day and still feel dehydrated. So, what gives?
It turns out that in addition to water itself, your body needs other nutrients to maintain that feeling of fullness and to function properly. That includes electrolytes like sodium, calcium, and potassium, which keep our cells working smoothly, as well as carbohydrates. Yes, you read that right: Carbs are an important part of staying hydrated!
David Nieman, a professor of biology at Appalachian State University, recently told BBC that to get the most out of your water, it’s actually not just what’s in your drink that matters but also what you eat with it, especially if you were just exercising. “Half a banana contains sugars and 24 types of polyphenols,” he explained. Polyphenols are important compounds that have a number of crucial body functions, including strengthening cognition, preventing cancers, aiding digestion, and protecting against heart disease. “This will keep water in the body, and contains nutrients to support exercise.”
The next time your mouth feels a little dry or you sense that you’re parched, pick up simple carbs like bananas or blueberries to steer clear of dehydration. Or if you’re making yourself a much more dense meal, veggies like sweet potatoes and whole grains like quinoa or oats are a great alternative to ensure you’re adding those carbs to the mix.