The last month and the first months of every year is full of not only excitement but a change in season and weather condition in West Africa (Harmattan).
With all the fun and festivities comes dehydration caused by harmattan. Plants dry up, animals scout for more water and humans find themselves craving more liquid intake than they had done in the previous months.
Dehydration is not healthy and can cause issues such as skin problems, fatigue, muscle cramps, headache, increased heart rate, and even low blood pressure.
The irony of the harmattan condition is that dehydration becomes a good thing for vendors of all kinds of drinks because they record an increase in sales, while the buyer unconsciously fills their systems with drinks that do not satisfy their thirst and can cause them harm.
Why you should opt for fruits instead of carbonated drinks during harmattan?
Nothing seem better than having a chilled bottle of soda on a hot or dry day. Sometimes, these drinks can be considered a life saver because they quench your thirst for the moment, cool your body down, and have you feeling energised and refreshed.
However, with the sweetness comes a truck load of sugar that is aimed at making you crave more and added chemicals and preservatives that might not exactly be healthy for the human body.
Carbonated drinks can increase your risk of pancreatic cancer, breast cancer, and even prostate cancer.
Other health dangers you should be worried about include: Diabetes, heart disease, liver damage hyperactivity, premature birth in pregnant women, early puberty, premature ageing, increase risk of Alzheimer’s disease, and obesity.
It is better to drink water during this season than consume any other kind of liquid for the sake of hydration. But for those of you who do not like the taste of water or cannot drink water as much as you drink other liquids, there is the option of fruits.
Why fruits are a better option?
The importance of fruits and vegetables in helping us stay healthy can never be over emphasised. These natural foods have been in existence since the days of the very first pair of our species and people have survived on them since then.
Asides the fact that fruits and vegetables fresh and contain no dangerous additives, they are packed with numerous health benefits and healing properties.
Below are some fruits that can keep you hydrated during harmattan.
This fruit tops the list because it contains 92% water which makes it one of the most hydrating fruits you can eat during this season.
The watermelon is also a nutrient dense fruit as it contains magnesium, vitamin A, vitamin C, and has life calorie content. This is great because you can consume a large portion of watermelon and take in only a small quantity of calories.
Fruits like watermelon can also help with weight loss and provide you with antioxidants. For hydration, you can eat watermelon as a snack, blend the flesh and consume as a drink, or include it in a fruit salad.
With water content of as high as 91%, strawberries are one of the fruits you want to have handy during the harmattan season.
91% of the body weight of this fruit comes from its water content, so if you decide not to drink too much water during the day snacking on a strawberry fruit can help provide you with enough hydration.
In terms of nutrients strawberries are also rich. They contain, vitamins, minerals, disease fighting antioxidants fibres manganese and folate.
Eating a strawberry regularly has been shown to reduce inflammation and also prevent a variety of diseases including various kinds of cancers and Alzheimer’s. Twink load a strawberry in your diet you can eat it as a snack blend it into a smoothie or include it in your salad.
Talk about a fruit that has high water content and lots of nutrients and I will show you peaches. features of a total of 90% water content with 90% of their weight being water weight.
Peaches are also rich in vitamins and minerals including potassium, vitamin A, vitamin B, and vitamin C.
While some people do not enjoy eating peaches with the skin on the skin can actually provide some antioxidants that are disease fighting.
Peaches are very filling because of their high water and fibre content which also means they are low in calories. A medium peach contains only 60 calories.
To consume peaches for hydration, you can eat them on their own, or you can blend them into a smoothie or include them in your salad. Whichever way you decide to enjoy your peaches, do not forget to include the skin.
You probably already know that oranges are one of the fruits with high water content which makes them perfect for hydration during the dry harmattan season. Oranges possess 88% water content alongside lots of vitamins and minerals as well as fibre.
Get ready to improve your heart health and immune function with potassium and enjoy the goodness of vitamin C as you stay hydrated with some oranges this season. oranges also contain anti oxidants known as flavonoids which may help reduce inflammation and prevent the damage of cells.
You can also keep your appetite under control with the liquid and fiber content of an orange as they promote the feeling of fullness.
It is also not worthy that citrus fruits like oranges can help fight against kidney stones because the contain citric acid that can bind with calcium oxalate that form stones and aid flushing them out of the body.
If you are not a sweet tooth and would rather chew on something to keep you hydrated than drink water, then cucumbers are the rights food for you.
One thing that makes cucumbers different from other vegetables that have high water content is that they have an almost insignificant calorie content. You can eat cucumbers in different ways so get yourself one today and stay hydrated.
Remember that hydration is important and it is better to get hydrated via a healthy source like fruits than other unnatural sources.