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Rethink Your Drink

It’s summer time, and as the heat turns up in July and August, it’s especially important to drink enough fluids during the day. Staying hydrated is important for carrying out the body’s essential processes and helps keep you feeling energized, even in the hot weather.

So, what are the best drinks for you if you have diabetes? The American Diabetes Association recommends sticking mostly to drinks that have zero calories or are very low in calories. When you choose these drinks, they’ll have little effect on your blood glucose and won’t cause weight gain. Water is one of the healthiest and easiest choices, but we know that a lot of people prefer some variety in their beverages.

Bored with water? There are a lot of other great beverage options:

  • If you’re looking to add some flavor to your water, try a quick squeeze of lime or lemon juice.
  • Mix it up with sparkling water, mineral water, or even just some club soda with a squeeze of lime.
  • Unsweetened tea and coffee are both very low in calories and carbohydrate. For tea, try black tea, green tea, or herbal teas too!
  • Low-calorie drink mixes also come in various flavors and can be an easy on-the-go option if you can find them in single serve packets.
  • Other diet drinks such as diet soda or diet lemonade are also an option.
  • For a refreshing summer beverage, try infused water. It’s simple to make. Just fill a pitcher with water and add sliced fruit, herbs, or a combination of the two to your water. Stick the pitcher in the refrigerator for a few hours and you’ll have a crisp, refreshing drink! Here are some different flavors to try:
    • Sliced oranges
    • Sliced lemons
    • Sliced strawberries and basil leaves
    • Sliced cucumbers and mint
    • Sliced limes and cubed honey dew melon
    • Sliced peaches and mint

Wondering if the caffeine in coffee and tea causes dehydration? According to an Institute of Medicine (IOM) report, these drinks actually contribute to your overall fluid intake despite their mild diuretic effects.

In addition to your drink choices, some foods can also contribute to your water intake. You’ll actually get some fluids from eating fruits and vegetables. So - make sure that you are filling half of your plate with non-starchy vegetables at lunch and dinner, and include a few servings of fruit throughout the day too! It’s a great time of year for fresh produce!

To read more about drink options, what to avoid, and what is best, visit What Can I Drink? on diabetes.org.

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