Health Watch - Summertime: Hydration

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.

This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about the start of the summer holiday season. One key to enjoying summer fun without risking heat exhaustion is to stay hydrated.

Lona Sandon, a registered dietitian at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says you need to drink plenty of water when you’re out in the heat, and you’ll need more fluids if you’re working or exercising in the heat. Keep a bottle with you so you can drink as you go. You may already be dehydrated when you feel thirsty. Water is the best option for hydration, but if you’re working or exercising in the heat for more than 90 minutes, use a sports drink to replenish sodium lost in sweat. Avoid beverages containing alcohol or caffeine — such as beer, tea and colas — because those don’t replenish body fluids. Signs of dehydration include weakness, exhaustion and delirium, and the situation can become dire very quickly, so be careful to stay hydrated in the heat.

Visit to learn more about UT Southwestern’s clinical services in nutrition.


May 2009

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