(STLMoms) - Staying hydrated is important year round, but it's a bit harder in the summer as kids play in outdoors in the heat.
Jen McDaniel with the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics joins FOX 2's Margie Ellisor with some ways to stay hydrated.
Message one: Start off with good hydration education: The first step is to teach your child how much fluid they need a day & how to know they are adequately hydrated.
1) A child`s fluid needs will depend on factors like their age, activity level, and the weather. In general, on average children 1-3 need 4cups of fluids, children 4-8 need 5 cups of fluids girls 9-18 need 7-8 cups and boys 9-18 need 8-11 cups. The more active a child, the more fluids they will require.
2) Teach your child to know the signs of good hydration, they should be going to the bathroom often and their urine should look like pale lemonade, not apple juice.
3) For most active kids, the ideal fluids for optimal hydration is water.
Message two: Flavor those fluids: 2ndly, we need to make fluids readily available and appealing.
1) 50% more fluids when flavored. Make fruit juice ice cubes, use low calorie mix-ins, milk is 90% water and a great choice, and splash of 100% juice.
2) Let them pick out their favorite cup.
3) Cold is more appealing & empties the stomach faster.
Message three: Add on more for the active athlete.
1) For kids taking part in more active sports or practices if they last longer than 60 minutes a sports drink containing carbs & sodium will help them hydrate more effectively.
2) Consume fluids regular intervals most kids won`t stop to drink during pa and if they complain of thirst it is too late, set up a drinking schedule every 20 minutes 10 big gulps of water ~little over ½ cup of fluids not only protect health, but improve performance too.
3) Offer fluids and fluid rich foods like fruits/vegetables, yogurts even popsicles after for good rehydration.
For more information visit: McDaniel Nutrition Therapy @mcdanielnutrition.com