Do you remember when everybody walked around without water bottles? Or perhaps a time before water was bottled and sold? We do.
I also remember during my time studying abroad that the way to identify American tourists was if they were carrying a water bottle (covered in stickers). It’s funny to think about it now that they’ve become so ubiquitous.
Also, have you noticed that the water bottles themselves keep getting bigger? The half gallon flask seems to be the new norm. That's A LOT of water to carry around with you (and a lot of peeing to go with it)!
The marketing around water and how much of it we need and in what form has also taken on new life.
Let me back up and start by saying that I am a huge fan of water. I believe more people need to have more hydration in their life in order to improve virtually all aspects of bodily function. Digestion, skin tone, mental clarity, energy– all of these areas can be improved simply by hydrating better.
But the way that most of us consume water is often not the most efficient...
Too many people chug water before, during, or after a meal. This ends up leaving you feeling bloated and tired– not to mention it slows your digestion.
Did you know that drinking water is best done on an empty stomach? It’s true– and first thing in the morning is the best time to hydrate for the day. This is when you should drink the majority of your water.
Drinking water with food should primarily be done in sips– mostly to cleanse the palate and enjoy your food. Also there are beverages other than water that are better to accompany a meal and increase the HCL in your stomach (but that is for a different article).
Another not-so-great habit (and the primary point of this article) is that you can never out hydrate a dehydrating diet. If you are drinking water on top of dehydrating foods (salty, oily, greasy) you’re never going to be properly hydrated. You’re just working against your body and its natural process.
This is why we recommend eating your water!
There is nothing more hydrating than juicy vegetables, fruits, and leafy greens and herbs. This is mother nature’s way of saying to have some water! These foods provide us with a naturally filtered, activated, and mineralized water source. Much better than anything that could ever come out of a filter or tap. This is one reason eating more raw foods is so extraordinary because you teach your body to crave foods that hydrate you rather than dehydrate you.
And since it’s warmer, consider how wonderful it is that nature provides us with some of the most water rich foods full of vitamins and minerals that are great for sun protection and help hydrate and mineralize you on another level. You can absolutely feel the difference if you spend your time eating more hydrating foods!
It goes without saying, but summer is the time to consume melons on repeat. From watermelon to other varieties, a good melon is truly the summer source of hydration. At 92% water they are basically one of the best foods you can eat for hydration.
Another type of melon and a food I truly prefer during warmer months– cucumbers are 95% water. As one of the highest water content foods, they are literally like eating water. People make the mistake of eating cucumbers with too many different foods and proteins and we’re telling you… they can be one of the worst disruptors of digestion and feel good flow. Start eating cucumbers on their own and you will thank us! Just sprinkle with a little bit of sea salt and you have edible electrolytes.
All the lettuces and herbs. Not only do these foods have a really high water content, they are also rich in minerals and nutrients that help your body absorb that hydration. They can be eaten alone or in salads with any of the other foods on this list.
Another food that I enjoy mostly during the summer. Eating tomatoes fresh and during their natural season is not only a way to hydrate, it’s also a rich source of lycopene– a phytonutrient that may help protect your skin from the sun’s damaging rays.
Berries and more berries. All the berries, all the time. 91% water and deeply rich in sun protective antioxidants. You can't beat berries when it comes to nutrition.
One last note…
All of these foods are best consumed on an empty stomach because they act like water in your bodies. Traditionally we might eat melon after a meal or cucumbers with a bunch of other foods, but trust us, proper food combining is absolutely a way to help improve your digestion and experience less bloating and fatigue after a meal. While many food combining ‘experts’ can make it sound complicated, our simple formula is to focus on eating foods with a high water content ALONE.
Enjoy eating your water all season long!
Photo: Jacopo Maia