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article imageBest choice for summertime hydration

By Christopher Wager     Jul 23, 2014 in Health
Kids need proper hydration not only to preform and feel their best, but to stay healthy and out of danger. High heat indexes and summer sports can leave kids out of time and out of fluid. Learn what exports are saying about energy drinks and hydration.
Summertime is here and that means high temperatures and humidity. It also means active kids, who don't always take the time to drink plenty of the right fluids. Low urination or dark urine, headache and confusion are some symptoms of dehydration. Parents need to know the facts of hydration and how to choose the right liquids to replace valuable essentials everyone needs to keep their bodies running.
To be sure your kids are drinking safe, hydrating pick-me-ups, there are key points to remember when standing in the soda aisle. Children need a summertime drink with plenty of electrolytes (used to carry signals to the muscles with the help of potassium, calcium).
The right balance of sodium (salt) and sugar without high amounts of caffeine is important.
Although according to new science studies by hydration expert, Ann Grandjean, EdD, FACSM, CNS, caffeinated drinks do not have the parching effects once thought — because of the body's ability to build a tolerance. To be clear, we are talking about moderate amounts of caffeine. For example, an 8 oz redline energy drink contains 316 mgs of caffeine. Regular 12 oz can of Mountain dew contains 54 mgs. High doses of caffeine in energy drinks have specific health risk, especially when kids drink too much. There have even been recorded deaths as a direct result. Leading some countries to ban them.
These drinks also contain the amino acid Taurine, found in the heart. It is used during exercise and tension and acts as a stimulant on the central nervous system. Studies have shown Taurine linked to illnesses from high blood pressure, strokes, seizures, to heart disease. This manmade chemical also has been banned by many countries because of its involvement in three deaths. These drinks also have a high percentage of carbohydrates, already in a kid's diet. Carbohydrates break down in the body and turn into glucose (sugar) your body uses for energy. High levels of carbohydrates slow the absorption of fluids to the body. Energy drinks have also had various amounts of guarana, ginseng, types herbal stimulants.
According to some experts, sports drinks are good source of hydration during activities. Some sports drinks may have a higher sodium percentage than others or contain more than one serving. They are often high in calories due to the sugar content. The powered form of these drinks you mix up with water is also smart choice.
Others make the point that water is the only liquid needed for proper hydration. Doctors and dietitians make the valid claim that water does the job under normal conditions. Water is not the best choice for active, active kids. It does little to restore the body's stores of elements mentioned and water's high-absorption rate only leads to its speedy departure. It is important to note too much water drank in a short time can be harmful or even fatal. If parents choose water, the best advice is to supplement it with a well-balanced diet.
For parents, Texas A&M University, producers of the report Health Hints has put together a simple hydrating recipe .
4 tablespoons sugar
1/4-teaspoon salt
1/4-cup boiling water
1/4-cup orange juice OR two tablespoons lemon juice
3 3/4 cups cold water
In the bottom of a pitcher, dissolve the sugar and salt in the boiling water. Add the juice and cold water; chill. Makes 1 quart.
Each 8-ounce glass of this sports drink contains 12 grams of carbohydrate (5 percent glucose), provides 55 calories, and costs about 7 cents to make. A typical store brand may cost about 28 cents per 8-ounce glass.
More about Kids, summertime, Heat, Hydration, Energy drinks
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