Healthy Hydration

Did you know that after water, tea is the most widely consumed beverage in the world? Staying well hydrated is so important to good health since losing as little as 1 to 2% of body weight from fluids can impair physical performance and our ability to think.1 If you are like most people, about 80% of your total fluid intake comes from drinking water and other beverages.2 Tea and herbal tea is 99.5% water and it counts towards your daily fluid intake. Tea is known for its many health benefits, so drinking tea is also good for you! Keep reading to find out how to satisfy your thirst with tea!

Cool Drinks for Hot Days

Cool glass of iced tea

On hot summer days what’s more refreshing than grabbing a cool drink? Enjoy hydrating with iced tea! Canada’s Food Guide suggests you satisfy your thirst with water as a great-tasting calorie-free way to help you stay hydrated. This is especially important in hot weather or when you are active.3 Since tea is 99.5 % water, it can count towards your fluid intake for the day – plus it tastes great!

Healthy Hydration benefits4

Your body is made up of nearly two-thirds water so it is really important that you get enough fluids throughout the day to stay hydrated. Remember ‘fluid’ includes water and additional drinks that give you water such as tea, herbal tea and other beverages. You also get water from the foods you eat. On average most people get about 80% of their fluid intake from drinking water and other beverages, and the other 20% from foods.2

Be sure to get enough fluids to be at your best in these important areas of health and wellness3:

  • Physical performance – under relatively mild levels of dehydration, individuals engaging in rigorous physical activity will experience decrements in performance related to reduced endurance, increased fatigue
  • Cognitive performance – dehydration changes some cognitive functions such as your ability to concentrate, alertness and short-term memory
  • Gut health – fluids can aid in digestion
  • Skin – the skin contains approximately 30% water, which contributes to plumpness, elasticity, and resiliency

Daily Healthy Beverage Guidelines5

Beverages make up an important part of nutrition for Canadians. Men and women aged 19 to 30 obtain around 20% of their daily calories from beverages.6 The Daily Healthy Beverage Guidelines, published in the March 2006 issue of the Journal of American Clinical Nutrition, can help you make smart choices about the types of beverages you consume. The guide looks at the relative health and nutritional benefits and risks of various types of beverages. Under the guidelines, unsweetened tea is second only to water as a beverage choice and people can drink up to eight cups of tea a day as part of a healthy diet.4

Daily Healthy Beverage Guidelines

For more information, view PDF version.

1. Liebermann HR. Hydration and Cognition: A critical Review and Recommendations for Future Research. J Am Coll Nutr 2007;26:555S-61S.

2. The Institute of Medicine. Dietary Reference Intakes: Water, Potassium, Sodium, Chloride and Sulfate. Washington DC: National Academy Press, 2004.

3. Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, represented by the Minister of Health Canada. Eating Well with Canada’s Food Guide, 2007.

4. Barry M. Popkin, Kristen E. D’Anci, and Irwin H. Rosenberg, Water, Hydration and Health, Nutr Rev. 2010 Aug; 68(8): 439–458.

5. Popkin BM1, Armstrong LE, Bray GM, Caballero B, Frei B, Willett WC., A new proposed guidance system for beverage consumption in the United States., Am J Clin Nutr. 2006 Mar;83(3):529-42.

6. Garriguet D. Beverage Consumption of Canadian Adults. Statistics Canada Health Reports, November 2008.

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