Haere mai ki a koutou! Hello, welcome to this nearly New Year! New Zealand’s long Christmas / New Year holiday break is all-but over and mostly everyone is heading back to work after camping, hiking, cycling or swimming themselves half to death. Who wouldn’t want to do it all over again?
I won’t lie. Christmas and New Year were not that flash for us. Our grandson came down with The Virus first. Although Noro Virus is more often associated with cruise ships than with children’s indoor play parks. The nasty Noro virus can be dangerous especially as it may lead to severe dehydration … anyhow we’re fine now.
January / February are New Zealand’s hottest months and this year is no exception. It is like being lightly steamed. Which is okay so long as you don’t have to work or walk any distance, or cook anything. It is easy to become dehydrated when doing any kind of physical activity though. Why does it matter? Well, dehydration can cause headaches, bad moods, fatigue, confusion and eventually seizures. Not good.
I have experienced moderately serious dehydration only twice in my life. The first incident occurred while my husband and I were descending a mountain. We had conquered the summit but in doing so we drunk all our water. It was 35 degrees Celsius and as arid as Mars. I expected an easy, though thirsty, walk down. However soon my knees felt wobbly while my calf muscles cramped. Gravity increased its hold on me and I felt dizzy, disorientated, and weary. I am reasonably sure that by the time we made it back to our car, and to a tepid bottle of water, we were staggering. Also, apart from a strange desire to eat lettuce, we had no appetite for the next twenty four hours, a shame because it was Christmas Day.
Signs of dehydration include: tiredness, sleepiness, dry mouth, decreased urine, moodiness, irritability, headache, loss of skin elasticity, difficulty walking and all while trying to ignore the extreme thirst. So, since it is easier to dehydrate than it is to rehydrate, it pays to keep your fluid levels topped up. Incidentally, did you know extreme dry, cold weather can cause dehydration too? Think of dry ice.
I normally like my tea hot, and with milk, however to keep hydrated in this humidity I have turned to cold brew tea. Iced tea is delicious but it contains a lot of sugar. Which is fine so long as you don’t drink more than a glass or two in a day. My infusion bottle, a gift from my son, makes cold brewing easy and it is convenient to carry when I’m on my bike. You just put the required amount of tea in the strainer, fill with water and ice, add fresh fruit, or as I am doing, experiment with medicinal herbs, then leave in the fridge for an hour. Done. Sometimes I add a small teaspoon of honey but think tisane rather than brew. The tea adds it’s rejuvenating, reviving quality to the cold water along with precious anti-oxidants.
Another gift I recieved, from my son and daughter in law, was the Progressive PL8 Tea Keeper. This little keeper will come in handy when I am travelling or camping and I have already filled it with my favourite oolong. Cute and functional too.
I hope you had a great holiday and are ready to tackle 2018 with me, one cup of tea at a time.