Foods that help meet your hydration goal

  • Published
  • 944th Medical Squadron Diet Technician

It can be hard to stay well-hydrated. But even if you struggle to drink enough water, there are some tasty water-rich foods to help you meet your hydration needs.

Watermelon (1 cup = 5 oz. H2O)

Watermelon is a good standard to measure other foods by when you're looking for hydration. Melons of all kinds are water bombs, but this pink-fleshed fruit also contains more of the anti-cancer compound lycopene than any other fruit, plus citrulline, an amino acid that may improve exercise performance.

Apple (1 medium = 5.5 oz. H20)

While most fresh fruits and vegetables are water-rich, apples tend to be at the top of the scale thanks to their density. Celery and lettuce may be 95 percent water, compared to an apple's 86 percent, but it's way easier to eat one apple than the equivalent amount of greens. Serving size matters too, kids.

Cooked brown rice (1/2 cup = 2.5 oz. H2O)

Foods like rice and dried pasta absorb lots of water as they cook, so they're surprisingly hydrating. Plus, it's a good way to get more whole grains, which most Americans are still falling short on, according to a recent study.

Tomato (1/2 cup = 3 oz. H20)

Not only are tomatoes at their in-season best during summer, they're also 94 percent water. And we're convinced the other 6 percent is pure flavor. While there truly is nothing like in-season produce, canned tomatoes are just as hydrating as an off-season alternative.

Baked potato (1 medium = 4.5 oz. H2O)

Yup, the humble spud is three-quarters liquid. Eat a whole baked potato (with skin), and you'll get a decent dose of fiber and potassium, and a surprising amount of water.

Kidney beans (1/2 cup canned, drained = 3 oz. H2O)

Few foods are healthier than beans. These plant-based proteins have antioxidants, fiber and iron, among other nutrients. And they're all stewing in a water bath, even after you've drained them.