Nothing beats a nice glass of cold water after a workout or an athletic game, but a new study suggests that if your activity was an especially strenuous workout in high heat, a slushy water mix may be best. According to the research, while it's important to stay hydrated during an intensive workout, many underestimate the equal importance of maintaining a healthy body temperature as well.

Experts recommend that we should drink 2 grams of water per kilogram of body mass to keep us hydrated, but according to the study's findings, drinking less than the recommended amount of ice slushy was just as effective as drinking the recommended amount of room temperature water after a strenuous workout or game in the heat. What’s more, the study found that drinking the full recommended amount of liquid in an ice slushy form was actually more effective than drinking it in a tepid water form because the cold drink was able to better regulate body temperature and other physiological responses for both workers and athletes.

"Individuals working in hot environments should be mindful of both the volume and temperature of the fluid they consume," concluded study author Dr. Brent Ruby in a recent statement.

While this study emphasizes the need for hydration following hard work or play in the heat, other experts suggest that the average individual does not need to worry about hydration as much as beverage companies may lead us to suggest. Except for a small amount of individuals with certain medical conditions, the thirst mechanism is all we need to ensure there is enough water to hydrate our bodies. In fact, drinking too much water is nearly as dangerous than drinking too little, and both can lead to death in extreme cases.

Source: Ruby BC, Hailes WS, Cuddy JS, Cochrane K. Thermoregulation During Extended Exercise in the Heat: Comparisons of Fluid Volume and Temperature. Wilderness and Environmental Medicine. 2016

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