June 2022 Nutritionist Guide
Foods for hot weather
The hot weather has finally arrived in Toronto! We spend more time outside enjoying the sunshine and outdoor activities during these spring and summer months. While we’re enjoying the warmer weather, staying as hydrated as possible is essential. We can do this by drinking lots of water and consuming lighter foods. Combining whole grains such as barley, buckwheat, oats, and millet with in-season fruits and vegetables is a great way to boost hydration. Watermelon, strawberries, cherries, cantaloupe, and leafy green veggies (kale, collard greens, swiss chard, spinach) are a great addition to any meal. You can also focus on consuming fruits with higher water content, such as melons and citrus fruits, or enjoy them as a snack with yogurt and nuts.
Hydration in summer
An easy way to stay hydrated all day long is to always pack a water bottle on the way out the door. You can even try Coconut water for added nutrients and hydration. Adding fruit to your water or blending up a nutritious packed smoothie is another great way to boost hydration. To round out your efforts, blend your smoothies with Greek yogurt, chia seeds, protein powder and nut butter to ensure you’re feeling hydrated and satisfied.
One of our favourite ways to increase our hydration is consuming organic cold-pressed juice. We sell a variety of organic cold-pressed juice combinations at our Organic Juice & Coffee Bar. They’re refreshing, convenient and packed with all minerals and nutrients. Make sure to try them out!
Make water your best friend
Water intake is crucial for your health as it hydrates every cell in your body and affects your exercise performance, especially during warm and humid weather. Daily water differs for everyone and is based on age, gender and level of activity. However, roughly women should drink around 12 cups per day and men 16 cups per day (including fluids from water, foods, and other drinks). Foods with a high water content include vegetables, fruits and lean proteins, so the higher your intake of those food groups in your diet, the higher your water intake in your body. In contrast, processed foods are low in water content and should be avoided as much as possible in our diets. Here are a few ways you can include more water every day:
- Consume more veggies as a salad and especially leafy greens, since they contain up to 92% water
- Enjoy seasonal fruits like melons and berries as a snack or combined in a fruit salad
- Take a bottle of water with you, especially when you are exercising outdoors, as the risk of dehydration is higher in summer
- Add cucumber or fruits like lemon, orange, grapefruit or berries in your water for extra hydration and nutrients and to liven up the flavour
It’s all about the electrolytes
Electrolytes are minerals your body needs to function optimally – especially when increasing stress with activity and hot weather. Electrolytes include magnesium, calcium, chlorine, phosphorus, sodium and potassium. When dissolved in water, these minerals create ions that are electrically charged particles. A good balance of electrolytes in your body allows for proper muscle contraction and nervous system function. A low level of electrolytes can cause muscle cramps, extreme fatigue and irregular heartbeat during workouts. Maintaining optimal hydration and electrolyte levels when exercising is crucial, especially in hot and humid weather. Commercial sports drinks often contain unnecessary colouring and refined sugar. Natural electrolyte alternatives include:
- Maple syrup contains 5 out of 6 electrolytes (all except chlorine)
- Apple cider vinegar contains 5 out of 6 electrolytes (all except chlorine) plus vitamin C and B vitamins
- Ginger is a source of potassium and magnesium
- Molasses is a source of calcium, magnesium and potassium
Book a 30-45 minute Nutrition Store Tour at our Customer Service Desk. Ask our Dispensary Staff about the best supplement options for you. You can also email our team at [email protected].