Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.
Home remedies to combat dehydration.
The long hot days of summer mean you’re spending more time enjoying outdoor activities, and you’re perspiring more. Throw in too much alcohol or caffeine, and there’s a good chance you could become dehydrated. Dehydration occurs when you lose more fluids than you take in, resulting in an imbalance of water, electrolytes, and salts in the body.
So what’s the big deal? Mild dehydration can result in fatigue, constipation, and headaches, to name just a few symptoms. More severe dehydration can be dangerous, and even deadly.
Of course, you should try to avoid dehydration by drinking plenty of fluids (preferably water) throughout the day. Carry water with you on day trips, especially during summer months, and keep extra bottles in your car. If you do become dehydrated, the following fixes can help to restore balance.
1. Enjoy a Margarita—Minus the Tequila
Mix about a teaspoon each of lime juice and sugar, and a pinch of salt (to help replace salt that is lost during excessive perspiration) with 2 cups of water. Sip throughout the day.
2. Chomp on “Watery” Fruits and Vegetables
Good choices: Watermelon, cantaloupe, and juicy berries such as strawberries. Cucumbers are a great option as well.
3. Sip Chamomile Tea
Decaffeinated teas (try them iced!) help to replace lost fluids. Chamomile is a great choice, as it is a natural pain reliever and can help to ease stomach cramps that commonly occur as a result of dehydration.
4. Cool Down with Herbs
Two to try: White willow bark can be used to reduce temperature, headache, and body aches associated with dehydration. Yarrow can also help to reduce body heat and lower temperature.
5. Soak in Epsom Salts
The magnesium in Epsom salts is absorbed through the skin, helping to relieve sore muscles and fatigue related to long-term dehydration.
6. Go Bananas
Bananas help to treat mild dehydration. Dehydration causes loss of minerals including potassium, and bananas are rich in potassium. Bananas also help to alleviate muscle cramps caused by dehydration.
7. Crack Open a Coconut
Much like a sports drink, coconut milk is rich in electrolytes and potassium, so it treats dehydration better than plain water.
Cool Off Fast
Dehydration is often accompanied by heat exhaustion. Inhaling the aroma of lavender and peppermint oil instantly cools the brain and helps to alleviate heat, according to Vannoy Gentles Fite, author of Essential Oils for Healing. Place one drop of each on a handkerchief or tissue, and inhale the aroma. Repeat as needed.