When it comes to staying hydrated, it is obviously important to drink plenty of water, but the food you eat also provides you with water and is an important part of the hydration process. A healthy balance consists of approximately 80% of your hydration coming from plain water and 20% from the food you eat.
Your fruits and vegetables will be the most water-rich food source, with at least 80% water per serving. A few of the top water-retaining produce choices: cucumbers (97%), tomatoes and zucchini (95%), eggplant (92%), and peaches (87%). Grains, beans and pastas are also good sources of water because as they cook they absorb a large amount of water. Even your choice of meat can impact whether or not you are maximizing your water intake. Many meats lose 20-30% of their water while cooking; however, fish and poultry are already high in water, which makes them good options for water-rich meal planning. If you’re aiming for maximum water content, bake your fish or chicken.
For people who want to lose weight, it’s better to increase the number of water-rich foods you’re eating instead of drinking more water – especially if you can replace high-fat or high-sugar foods with water-rich ones. In fact, making sure that water-rich foods feature heavily in your diet is essential. Drinking water won’t satisfy hunger, but eating a snack of cucumbers will, and it will also quench your thirst and keep you from grazing on foods less supportive of your weight goals.
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