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ICMR cautions against sugary drinks, urges Indians to stay hydrated in healthy ways this summer


Summer heat demands hydration but not at cost of

As heatwaves intensify across with summer temperatures rising day by day, many turn to sugarcane juice and cool beverages for relief from the scorching heat. However, the country's leading health body ICMR has issued an advisory cautioning people from consuming these drinks in excess.

According to ICMR, sugarcane juice which is relished by many especially during summers due to its refreshing taste is high in natural sugar and should be taken in moderation. The body also advises limiting intake of soft drinks which are not healthy replacements for water.

Sugarcane juice scores high on taste but low on healthas per nutritionists. Its high sugar content can dehydrate the body instead of hydrating it. When consumed in hot , it causes more water loss through sweat as the body works harder to break down sugars. Blood sugar spikes are another issue raising diabetes risk. Excess calories from juice can also lead to unwanted weight gain over time.

Nutritionally, whole fruits surpass juices hands down. They contain fiber keeping one full for longer while regulating sugar absorption and digestion. Fruits also offer essential vitamins, minerals and antioxidants lost or reduced through juicing.

Soft drinks, both fizzy and non-fizzy, are deemed poor substitutes for water. They may contain artificial ingredients with long term health implications. Caffeine and acidity contribute to dehydration rather than quenching thirst.

For those dependent on tea and coffee, moderation is key. Large quantities or frequent intake should be avoided due to caffeine's diuretic effect. Herbal teas make for a better choice later in the day.

The ICMR recommends drinking at least 8-10 glasses of water daily besides choosing options like buttermilk, lemon water and coconut water containing electrolytes to stay hydrated and beat the heat. Homemade electrolyte drinks and eating water-rich fruits and veggies also help. Making wise beverage choices ensures good health even in sweltering weather conditions.

The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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