Summer is here and the intense heat is only pointing at the mercury levels rising up and beyond our comfort zone. A tough time for almost everyone around us but most of all kids. Every parent worries about their child spending lengthy hours in the sun, engaged in sports activities or the general routine. While we cannot take away their “bonding time with the sun,” what we can do however, is make sure to watch for any early signs of dehydration and warn them about the expected symptoms to help them suffice through this harsh weather.
Let's talk about Dehydration for a bit before we move on to the next and more important topic of adequate water consumption. Did you know if your child is really thirsty, they may already be dehydrated. So it is absolutely essential for every child to be taught about the benefits of maintaining healthy levels of fluid intake at any given point of time. But does anybody know what is the adequate amount of water intake for a young child? Let's say a toddler!
Here's an easy infographic to stand by, whenever in doubt. Released by the Institute of Medicine, Washington DC,USA, the number of cups per day are an easy symbol of the approximate amount we should aim to consume per day.
According to this infographic a healthy toddler should be consuming approximately 1 litre or 4.5 cups of water everyday and a young child should be consuming about 1.4 litres or 6 cups of water.
Making sure your child stays hydrated is not rocket science. Similarly you can't be stressing about it while they aren't around. So mainly the first rule of thumb is to educate them about the benefits of staying hydrated. Encouraging kids to drink water will help them to develop a taste for it, which is an important first step towards adapting lifelong healthy preferences. Water is also essential for brain health and function. It's important that kids drink often during hot weather. Those who are involved in outdoor sports or other physical activities should drink extra fluids beforehand, and then take regular drink breaks during the activity. Don't give your child carbonated soda drinks. If she drinks juice, then try diluting it with water. Coconut water is an excellent option for rehydration, since it is a natural source of electrolytes including sodium and potassium.
With the summer inching towards its peak now, healthy hydration habits in your kids is an absolute must for them to enjoy the season.
Handy hints to stand by-
- Encourage kids to consume natural drinks that are not artificially sweetened and are free from additives.
- Many foods such as fruits, vegetables and yogurt have high water content and can also contribute to fluid intake
- Always pack a water bottle in their bag when they are heading off to school, outings, or other activities
- Intake of fluids in the morning with breakfast, and at regular intervals during the day is a good habit to follow
- Children participating in sports or being exposed to warm weather need to replenish the lost fluids by drinking more water than the routine intake
- Parents and other care giverscan play a key role in helping to ensure that children are provided with drinks on a regular basis and by actively encouraging its consumption.
Stay Healthy and Stay Hydrated!!