I’m a self-proclaimed water addict. I absolutely love the stuff and it’s very few and far between that I’ll choose another beverage over it. That said, water definitely isn’t for everyone; there are tons of people out there that either just don’t care for it or can’t get enough of it into them no matter how hard they try.
Luckily, water doesn’t only come in liquid form. Did you know that you can eat your water too? There are a ton of foods out there that can help you up your water intake while providing you with a ton of nutrients at the same time.
Today we’re going to focus on veggies; here are a bunch of nutritionally packed vegetables that you can work into your diet for a nutritional boost as well as a hydration amp up.
Don’t miss: Top 10 Hydrating Fruits [Infographic]
1. Cucumber – 96.7% Water
The cucumber actually has the highest water content of any solid food, and it’s so versatile that anyone can find a way to enjoy it! Personally, I’ve been known to just pluck ‘em out of the garden and enjoy them that way. If that’s not really your thing, you could try them sliced and dipped in hummus or cut up and served in a salad.
If you want to seriously pump up the hydrating power of them, try making cucumber soup (by blending them with yogurt, mint, and some ice cubes). It’s super satisfying during the hot and humid summer months and can also help to cool down your internal temperature.
2. Iceberg Lettuce – 95.6% Water
Iceberg lettuce tends to get shut out by the darker green lettuces (like Romaine) because its nutritional value doesn’t quite pack the same punch. That said, it blows other lettuces away when it comes to water content. Use it as a bed for chicken salad, pile it onto your sandwiches, or use it instead of buns and tortillas when you’re eating burgers or tacos.
3. Celery – 95.4% Water
Not only does celery have a super high water content, but it also has very few calories (only six per stalk) which makes it a perfect food to reach for when you’re trying to shed some extra pounds. Pair that with its fairly impressive fiber and nutritional content (it contains vitamins A, C, and K as well as folate) and you’ve got a healthy food that will fill you up quickly and help stretch the time between lunch and dinner.
Bonus: Because of the high water content in this vegetable, it can help neutralize stomach acid and is often used as a natural remedy for heartburn and acid reflux. Not sure where your heartburn is coming from? Check out this article we posted on low stomach acid.
4. Radishes – 95.3% Water
Radishes can add an amazing layer of taste and texture to your summer salads, and as far as I know this little root vegetable will grow just about anywhere. In addition to having a high water content they also come packed with antioxidants such as catechin (which is most commonly found in green tea), making their nutritional punch even more powerful. Chopped salad not your thing? Try making coleslaw or adding them to your sandwiches and wraps.
5. Tomatoes – 94.5% Water
Technically a fruit, but far more accepted as a vegetable so we’re putting them on this list as well. Tomatoes are full of all sorts of good things and are so incredibly versatile that absolutely anyone can find a way to enjoy them. Throw them on a sandwich, toss with basil and mozzarella for a caprese salad, or just pop a couple of grape tomatoes in your mouth and get flavour and hydration in one shot!
6. Green Peppers – 93.9% Water
All peppers have a fairly high water content (with the sweeter ones coming in at about 92%), but green peppers lead the back when it comes to the ability to hydrate and satiate at the same time. And contrary to popular belief, they also happen to have the same amount of antioxidants as well. They’re also super versatile – Mix them into salads and stir frys or simply cut one up and munch on it while you’re making dinner.
7. Cauliflower – 92.1% Water
Raw cauliflower on its own is one of my favourite things, but a lot of people claim that they’re just not a fan. If that’s you, try using hummus or ranch as a dip or sub it for croutons in your favourite summer salads to get the same crunch without all the carbs.
And don’t let its pale color fool you – This veggie packs a serious nutritional punch! It’s chalked full of vitamins and phytonutrients and has been shown to lower cholesterol levels and even fight cancer (See research here).
8. Spinach – 91.4 % Water
Spinach might not have quite a much water content as iceberg lettuce does, but it’s nutritional value is leaps and bounds better so if you have the ability to choose either, spinach is always the better bet. It’s packed with lutein, folate, potassium, fiber, and all sorts of other good things. And just a cup of the dark leafy green vegetable (in its raw form) contains 15% of our recommended intake of vitamin E which can help fight off nasty free radicals.
9. Broccoli – 90.7% Water
Broccoli adds the same sort of crunch as cauliflower does to a salad, but it also packs a more impressive nutritional punch. It comes brimming with fiber, potassium, vitamins A and C and more which makes it a perfect thing to reach for when you want some nutrition with your water. It also happens to be the only cruciferous vegetable (see the study above to see what other veggies fall into this category) that contains a significant level of sulforaphane (a potent compound that raises your body’s level of protective enzymes and gets rid of cancer causing chemicals).
10. Baby Carrots – 90.4% Water
You would think that a carrot is a carrot is a carrot, but that’s apparently not the case. Baby carrots contain quite a bit more water than their full sized counterparts (which are only about 88% water). You also can’t beat the convenience factor here – No peeling or chopping required! Simply eat them straight out of the bag, dip them in hummus or your favourite guac, or add them to salads for added flavour, colour, and crunch.
Please keep in mind that these vegetables will need to be consumed raw in order for you to benefit from their full hydration potential – Once you cook them, they can lose quite a bit of water. That said, now that you know just how valuable these ten vegetables can be to your hydration levels, you should have no problem getting your daily water intake!
Here’s an infographic with all of the veggies mentioned above you can keep on hand so you can quickly view them all whenever you’re making your healthy grocery shopping list:
How do you eat your water? Let us know in the comments section below.
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