With summer’s warm weather and kids attending summer camp, it’s particularly important to make sure active kids are getting their fill of water. Besides quenching their thirst, water acts as a cooling mechanism for the body, helping with digestion as well as cognitive function.
Rule of thumb is 2 to 3 ounces of fluid per day per pound of body weight. So, typically a toddler (1-3 years) should have 4 cups of fluid per day ; 4-8 year olds – 5 cups; 9-13 year olds – 7 to 8 cups; teens – 8-11 cups.*
1. Add sliced fruits, cucumber slices or mint leaves to water so your kids won’t get tired of drinking plain water.
2. Water is best, but many fruits and veggies have high water content. Some fresh fruits and vegetables, such as cucumbers, watermelon, cantaloupe, and cauliflower are more than 90% water! Juices are also good, just make sure they are 100% juice and not mostly colored sugar water.
3. Make drinking fun! Let your kids pick out their own water bottles in their favorite colors or decorated with their favorite characters. If you’re using cups, buy fun straws.
4. Set reminder times throughout the day to finish and refill water bottles. This will help you to stay on top of how much water your kids are drinking.
5. Remember to rehydrate your kids for sweat that is lost on hot days or when playing sports or doing outdoor activities.
Thanks to Jessica Guarnieri,** Retail Registered Dietician for Shoprite of Stirling for providing these great tips for our kids this summer!
Aside from complaints of thirst, it can be hard to detect when a child is dehydrated. Some signs could be decreased or dark urine, dizziness, and lethargy. If this occurs, call your pediatrician immediately.
*Institute of Medicine of the National Academies. Recommended Daily Allowance and Adequate Intake Values.
**Jessica was also a recipient of the 2017 Mission Advancement Volunteer for the Berkeley Heights YMCA. Jessica’s passion for helping people to be their best self and her strong belief that nutrition and exercise are two sides of the same coin is what powers her commitment to working with members of our Y. As the registered dietitian of the Stirling ShopRite, Jessica empowers our members to make healthy, manageable, and achievable changes to their diet and lifestyle. To learn more about the Mission Advancement Volunteer Award and other awards celebrated at our Annual Celebration, click here.
About the Summit Area YMCA
The Summit Area YMCA is one of the area’s leading 501(c)(3) charitable organizations. Founded in 1886, the Summit Area YMCA has a history steeped in working side-by-side with our neighbors to ensure that everyone, regardless of age, income and background, has the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive. Each year, we serve more than 10,000 individuals with our free and fee-based programs and services in an area spanning the communities of Berkeley Heights, Gillette, Millburn, New Providence, Short Hills, Springfield, Stirling and Summit. Through the generosity of our members, donors, and partners, we are able to offer financial assistance for our programs and services to those with demonstrated need.