Staying hydrated is just as essential for your health in winter as in summer.

5 Surprising Ways to Stay Hydrated – And Why It’s So Important

Did you know you’re just as likely to suffer from dehydration in winter as in summer? No, you’re not sweating as much, but your body still needs just as much water to stay healthy. Found in every cell, water regulates internal temperature, flushes toxins, lubricates joints, strengthens immunity, maintains digestion, and even improves skin health.

But when it’s not hot out, your thirst is diminished by as much as 40 percent, so you don’t have this natural reminder to drink. Meanwhile, cold temperatures trigger your body to conserve heat by decreasing circulation to the extremities, which makes it harder to notice when you’re becoming dehydrated. All of this means that drinking plenty of water is just as important now as in summer, when you’re aware of it. Try these tips to prevent dehydration in cooler weather.

  1. Drink water before and after every meal.
  2. Keep a pitcher of water chilled in your refrigerator.
  3. Squeeze a slice of lemon, lime, or add mint or fruit into your water to add flavor.
  4. Carry a water bottle on walks.
  5. Bring a reusable water bottle to work, and refill as needed.
  6. Keep a water bottle on your desk, and refill it on each trip to the restroom.
  7. When you get up to stretch, make a roundtrip to the water fountain.
  8. Replace soda and other sugary drinks with water.
  9. Try flavored sparkling mineral water without added sugar or artificial sweeteners.

Think of drinking water as an essential part of your health and wellness routine, and staying hydrated will become a natural habit.

Melanie Haiken writes about health, wellness and fitness for national magazines and websites. She specializes in discovering and reporting the latest research on diet, nutrition, fitness, weight loss and other health-related topics. Her award-winning stories have appeared in Fitness, Shape, Health, Forbes, and other respected magazines. She also contributes health stories to numerous Kaiser Permanente newsletters and other publications.