Long fasting hours during Ramadan combined with the heat of summer this year means that it is very important for people fasting to take extra precautions to prevent dehydration.
Drinking sufficient water is the best way to stay hydrated, but you could also try these interesting options to supplement your water intake and ensure you stay healthy during the fasting period.
Eat watermelons: A watermelon is made up of 92 percent water, and 8 percent fruit, but they also have a low sugar content and contain a whole lot of vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, B1, B5, B6 and C, as well as potassium and magnesium. This rich mix helps make watermelons an ideal food to help re-hydrate and nourish the body after a long day of fasting. Pair watermelon cubes with some sharp feta cheese and a sprig of mint for a more exciting dish.
Drink milk: This re-hydrator is actually a great substitute for water. Have a bowl of cereal after Iftar with some milk. Milk is a great way to get your calcium fix, but it also keeps hydration levels up throughout the day. It is also a great post workout drink, as it helps with recovery after exercise.
Start with soup: Soup is an essential starter at any iftar table. If you have the option, choose a clear soup rather than a creamy one. Many soups are also loaded with hydrating and carbohydrate-rich produce, and hence, are able to boost energy and performance.
Taste a smoothie: Pick some fruits with high water content such as oranges, watermelon, apples, pineapples, and peaches and make a smoothie. Instead of adding yogurt or milk, try adding water and some ice instead. It will keep you hydrated for longer and you can make a large batch and drink it during Suhoor. You can also try a smoothie bowl, which is a blend of fruits, vegetables and other components such as avocado and oats, and is very nutritious.
Munch on leafy greens: Although it is nutritionally quite ineffective, the Iceberg lettuce contains 96 percent water, and is a great addition to any salad if you want to re-hydrate. So if you are not a soup person, break your fast with a tasty salad instead. The addition of some cucumbers and tomatoes will really boost water levels.
Make oatmeal an Iftar staple: Creamy oatmeal, sprinkled with fresh fruit, makes for a surprising source of fluid. This is because the oats expand and absorb the water or milk that they are cooked in.
Savor unsweetened, flavored teas: Flavored drinks are very enjoyable, so you will definitely want to refresh yourself with your favorite tea. Brew homemade iced tea and add some fresh lemon, or have a mug of hot chamomile or green tea—all count toward your daily fluid goal.
Pudding: Chia seeds are an excellent source of long-term hydration, as well as fiber and protein, and they soak up a ton of water you will not even know you are drinking.
Drown 1/3 cup of chia seeds in three cups of your milk of choice — almond, coconut, soy, and dairy. Add a sweetener like honey or maple syrup, leave for a few hours and voila — a delicious, moisture rich food.
Mixing yogurt or kefir with fruit is another pudding style food that is high in nutrition and water to start your day hydrated.