It’s hard for Senior Citizens to stay warm and hydrated during the winter. When fluid intake levels drop in a Senior, dehydration is a far more likely occurrence. Senior Citizens are particularly susceptible due to their lower sense of thirst. Winter makes this worse because cold weather alters the thirst sensation.
Dehydration in Winter
Senior Citizens lose water in the winter due to fluid loss through breathing. The body needs to warm and moisten the cold, dry air before it reaches the lungs. This draws moisture from the body. Exercising in the cold compounds the problem with heavier and deeper breathing. Also, heavy winter clothes cause sweating which can lead to dehydration in Seniors.
Staying Warm and Hydrated
A large glass of ice water may not be appealing on a cold winter day. So, how can we encourage Senior Citizens to stay hydrated in the cold? The right food and drink can help with warmth and hydration. Hot liquids offer these combined benefits.
Warm drinks are a great way to stay hydrated in the winter. Herbal tea, chai, and warm milk all replenish fluids. You can also try hot water with lemon and honey or the hot apple cider recipe below.
Hot Apple Cider Recipe
1. Pour 8 cups fresh apple juice into a 3-quart saucepan.
2. Cut an orange into round slices and add to the saucepan.
3. Add 2 cinnamon sticks, 4 whole cloves, and a sprinkle of nutmeg.
4. Heat on medium for 5 minutes or until the mixture is hot, stirring occasionally.
5. Strain the cider into individual mugs.
6. (Optional) Garnish with whipped cream and cinnamon sticks.
Another great way to stay warm and hydrated in the winter is to consume clear soup packed with vegetables and lean protein. It is a filling and nutritious way to stay hydrated.
Easy Turkey and Vegetable Soup Recipe
1. Heat a little oil in a pan.
2. Add 1 large clove of chopped garlic, 1/4 cup chopped onion, and 1/4 cup chopped celery. Saute until the onions start to turn clear.
3. Add 1 pound ground turkey. Cook until brown and drain.
4. Add 1 cup chopped broccoli, 1/2 cup chopped carrots, and 1/2 cup chopped mushrooms. Saute for one minute.
5. Add 4 cups vegetable stock and bring to a boil. Cook until vegetables are tender.
6. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Partaking of hot beverages and clear soup increases hydration in the winter. They tend to make Senior Citizens feel warm and cozy.
An in-home Companion or Certified Homemaker Home Health Aide will ensure that the Senior in your life stays warmer and more hydrated during the upcoming winter season. Call us to help make a difference in their lives, as we are “Families Helping Families” 908-788-9390.