10 Ways to Increase Water Consumption at High Elevation
How many times have you been told to drink more water or push fluids? We all know we’re supposed to drink more water and especially so at high altitude. Your body will lose more water through respiration twice as quickly at high altitude than at sea level. Because temperatures are cooler, your thirst response may also be lowered putting you at even greater risk of dehydration. Here are 10 helpful ways to increase your water consumption while vacationing in Breckenridge and other high elevation destinations.
Eat your water: That’s right, chew your water! Many healthy foods have a high water content so you’ll not only increase water consumption, but you’ll be getting some much-needed vitamins and minerals. Some delicious high-water-content foods include watermelon, cucumber, zucchini, grapefruit, cantaloupe, spinach, and salad greens.
Flavored water: The possibilities for flavoring your water are endless. Frozen fruits such as strawberries, oranges, grapes, and pineapple can double as sweeteners and ice cubes. Crushed berries can add not only flavor but a splash of color. If you don’t like sweets, try lemon or a slice of refreshing cucumber. Re-live some childhood memories and try some old-fashioned Kool-Aid! Use half the recommended amount of sugar or try some Krystal Light.
Drink your fluids through a straw: More fluids and less air are taken in when fluids are consumed through a straw.
High-Tech water bottle: Is there anything that has not yet been invented? Believe it or not, there are multiple high-tech water bottles on the market these days. Through an LCD screen on the bottle, you can set your weight and hydration goals. The read-out will let you know what percentage you have achieved and how much you drank per hour.
Hydration App for your Smartphone: There are at least a dozen Apps for your smartphone designed to help you increase and track your water intake. They offer a variety of features, but for the most part, the idea is to input your weight and the type of beverage you are drinking. The App will calculate how much you need to consume, will track your water consumption, and send reminders via your phone throughout the day to remind you to take a sip…or a gulp.
Dilute juices: Fruit juice is a great source of hydration, but if sugar is a concern or the taste is too sweet, dilute the juice with some ice cold water. This can be done with iced tea as well.
Electrolyte replacement drink mix: There are several formulas on the market. Most include vitamins, minerals, and various leaf/berry extracts for enhanced acclimatization and mountain performance.
Water before and with meals: While on vacation, you’ll likely be dining out. Drink at least 8 ounces of water before a meal and opt for water with your meal rather than a soda. Reward yourself with dessert for the calories you’ll save by having water with your meal.
Take water to bed at night: Most of us wake at least once a night. Take a few sips or a gulp of water in the middle of the night and drink at least 8 ounces first thing in the morning. If you prefer cold water, put ice water in an insulated bottle or cup to keep it cool til morning.
Don't leave home without it: Like your phone, your favorite lip balm, or anything else you are addicted to, keep a bottle of water with you at all times. Look closely at the Summit County locals and you’ll notice that a great deal of them are carrying a reusable water bottle with them around town or have one nearby at all times while at work or play. Don’t buy plastic from the store! There are hundreds of reusable options at almost every store in town, Walmart or Target. Decorate with some Colorado stickers and you’ll look like a local.
Sometimes, no matter how much H2O you consume, symptoms of altitude sickness keep coming back. When this happens, we recommend supplemental oxygen to help your body acclimate. Reserve your oxygen concentrator online at www.theoxygenguys.com.