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| Health and Fitness

07/17/14

Caffeine overload: Summer is the best time to kick your caffeine habit

Plenty of summertime beverages stand out as staples on a hot, humid day.
Lemonade, iced tea and an array of sodas sound pretty tempting when you're lounging by the pool, hosting a barbeque or have friends over just because you all enjoy the crisp, nighttime summer air.
The irony of those aforementioned beverages being marketed and sold as summertime favorites is that they're some of the worst options when the weather turns from comfortable to unbearable as far as humidity is concerned.
The sun, coupled with the humid temperatures and thick, low quality, air all can contribute to you feeling a little lightheaded and tired between June and August thanks to a lack of water and too much caffeine in your diet.
Caffeine is a prime culprit for dehydration in the summer, and everything from your two iced coffee per day habit along with gallons upon gallons of iced tea consumed isn't going to do you any favors this year.

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And for those of you that want to enjoy a tall, cold beer or any sort of alcohol can expect more of the same if that's your favorite beverage to pair with a hamburger, steak or chicken off the grill. Alcohol works much the same way caffeine does; it dehydrates your body quickly and without warning.
The best way to combat the heat is to drink at least 64 ounces of water each day, and more if you're in the midst of doing some outdoor work like landscaping, grass cutting or painting. If you work outside, make sure you have water available at all times and stay as close to that water jug or bottle if your job takes you away from where that water is stationed.
Water can be a bit overwhelming in the summer months, and it's hard to argue that drinking too much water can not only make you nauseous but rid your body of important protein. That's why you can always supplement your summertime beverage repertoire with juice or flavored water. The former should come in the form of only natural sugar added, while the latter is tougher to navigate through so many options.
Flavored seltzer water is ideal, and drinking water that is artificially flavored with aspartame is no different than a diet soda. Don't be fooled by the "water" labeling or the clever marketing behind these products.
Plain, old bottled or tap water on ice in a cooler should suffice and ease your concerns about not feeling your best in the midst of enjoying your summer. The diet drinks, alcohol or heavily sugared options aren't necessarily completely off limits but should be consumed in moderation at best.

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