The most hydrating drink in hot weather, water isn’t even in the top three.

The search for suitable hydration solutions has become important in the aftermath of an unprecedented global heatwave. According to recent research from Scotland’s prestigious St. Andrews University, skim milk is the greatest beverage for hydration. According to the findings of the study, while water in its still and carbonated forms instantly hydrates the body, beverages with little sugar, fat, or protein content are far more successful at maintaining hydration levels over lengthy periods of time.

The study’s author, Ronald Maughan, a famous professor at St. Andrews Medical School, noted that this is based on how our bodies react to various drinks. The volume of a drink is an important aspect in determining its hydration capacity. The more liquid taken, the faster it empties from the stomach, enters the bloodstream, and dilutes bodily fluids to give hydration.

However, the nutritional composition of a beverage is equally important in influencing its ability to hydrate the body. Surprisingly, milk is a better hydrator than plain water. Lactose, protein, and fat content in milk lead to a slower rate of fluid emptying from the stomach, resulting in prolonged hydration. Furthermore, milk contains salt, which serves as a sponge to hold water within the body, resulting in decreased urine production.

Similar qualities can be found in oral rehydration treatments, which are commonly used to treat diarrhea. These solutions frequently contain trace levels of sugar, sodium, and potassium, all of which help the body retain water and allow effective rehydration. Let’s take a look at the St. Andrews University research team’s ranking of common beverages in terms of their impact on hydration over four hours:

Milk that has been skimmed, Solutions for mouth rehydration, Full-fat dairy products, The juice extracted from oranges, Diet Coca-Cola, Tea over ice, Tea with still water, Lager Coffee Sparkling Water. The significance of staying hydrated cannot be overstated as the world continues to face sweltering temperatures. The findings of the study are expected to alter our beliefs of the best hydrating beverages, with skim milk emerging as a surprising and powerful challenger.

Accepting these truths and realizing the importance of food composition can help enhance hydration strategies and overall well-being during heat waves and beyond. Stay hydrated, and you’ll be fine!

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