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Jul 14, 2014

Guest Post from Amanda Howard: Staying Hydrated



 
Staying hydrated is the most important thing to remember especially in the summer. As dancers, we sweat all the time and with the summer sun blazing down on us it makes it hard to stay hydrated.
Try to make sure that you have a full water bottle with your wherever you go. Marie Scioscia, nutritionist at The Ailey School says “Dancers who are moving continuously for 60 minutes or more should rehydrate with a half-cup of water every hour.” Now I know that water in and of itself can get a little boring, so supplement it with electrolyte filled beverages that are low in sugar.
 
 
I recommend adding lemon to your water. It adds flavor and changes things up a bit. The lemon helps to balance your pH levels, is loaded with potassium, has anticancer properties, aids in digestion, supports weight loss, and prevents bloating.


 
Another way to make your water interesting is by adding a powdered drink pack. The ones I use have antioxidants, vitamins, and electrolytes in them to make them that much more healthy. I would naturally recommend that you stick to the powdered drink flavors that don’t have any artificial sweeteners. The best ones that you can buy would be sweetened with Stevia. It’s better for you because it has a lower glycemic level than sugar and is a lot healthier than artificial sweeteners. You can purchase these pretty much anywhere, but I get mine at Target.

 
Last, but not least, I recommend coconut water. It tastes good and you can now get it in tons of different flavors. It does contain a little sugar but it is all natural. Stay away from coconut waters that add sugar or any kind of sweetener, coconut is sweet in itself. Coconut water is the best choice when you want to rehydrate fast. It is low in sugar if drunk by its lonesome, is low in sodium and high in chloride, regulates the body’s temperature, boosts the immune system, boosts metabolism, and helps with digestion. As you can see, coconut is an amazing fruit!
I do not recommend the average sports drink or vitamin water. They are usually high in sugar and sodium or they contain deadly artificial sweeteners. Because they are so high is sugar, they can lead to weight gain if drunk regularly and they can actually slow you down instead of boosting your energy levels. Most Gatorades and colored drinks have artificial colors as well. They are basically a soda without the carbonation.
 
Consider this: one bottle of regular Gatorade has about 200 calories and contains 56 grams of sugar. 200 calories is about the same amount the average person would burn running two miles–and 56 grams of sugar is about the same amount of sugar as two and a half candy bars. That’s also nearly three times the amount of sugar the average adult woman is recommended to consume. So while you may burn it off with a solid 30 minutes of running (depending on how fast you are), it’s unlikely you needed almost 60 grams of sugar to do it.  In fact, according to the American Dietetic Association, Dietitians of Canada, and American College of Sports Medicine, only individuals who work out at maximum, strenuous effort for a full hour should consider sports drinks as a method of replenishment.”
So with all that said; I hope you have a wonderful summer! Remember, if you are feeling thirsty it’s too late. Keep hydrated and stay healthy.
XO,
Amanda
 
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Thanks, Amanda, for the great work and such informative articles!

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