Water isn’t the best to stay hydrated. Try skimmed milk
When thirst strikes, which drink comes to your mind? Water? The answer might be yes for most people, but it isn’t the best drink for hydration.
Simple H2O isn’t the most hydrating beverage around, according to a study from Scotland’s St Andrews University. While both still and sparkling water can quench thirst, it can be defeated by sweet, fat or protein-rich beverages in keeping a person hydrated, researchers have found.
According to a study published i n The Ameri c a n Journal of Clinical Nutrition, skimmed milk is most hydrating followed by oral rehydration solutions, full-fat milk, orange juice, cola, diet cola, cold tea, tea, sports drink, still water, sparkling water, lager, and coffee.
The reason lies in how our bodies respond to beverages, according to study author Ronald Maughan, a professor at St Andrews’ School of Medicine. One factor is the volume of a given drink: The more you drink, the faster it is absorbed into the bloodstream, where it dilutes the body’s f luids and hydrates you.
Another factor is connected with the drink’s nutrient composition. For example, milk was found to be even more hydrating than water because it contains the sugar lactose, some protein and some fat.
Milk also has sodium, which behaves like a sponge and holds onto water in the body and results i n less urine produced.
This idea can also be put forth for oral rehydration solutions used in treating diarrhoea. They contain small amounts of sugar, along with sodium and potassium, promoting water retention in the body. The catch here is the fact that beverages with more concentrated sugars — fruit juice, cola — might not be as hydrating as their lower-sugar cousins.
However, if the choice is between soda and water for hydration, go with water every time
Beverages with a little sugar, fat or protein do a better job than water in keeping us hydrated