There’s nothing quite like cracking open an ice-cold beer at the end of a hot summer day. The frosty can in your hand, those crisp, golden suds hitting your parched mouth for that first glorious sip … can’t you just taste it?

Whether you’re kicking back at your favourite lake, beach, or buddy’s backyard, it can be tempting to keep knocking back those brewskis. But instead of waking up with a hangover, we have the perfect beverage to keep you cooler than Steve McQueen on a Roadster. What is this awesome drink? Water for the win!

Why Water Matters

You may laugh, but staying hydrated is no joke. Hydration lets your body control its temperature, keeps your bowels regular, carries nutrients throughout your body, and even cushions your organs and joints.

When you sweat and go to the bathroom, your body loses water. If you lose more fluid than you take in, you can get dehydrated. That’s not only the cause of dry mouth, it can also impact your blood pressure, give you a terrible headache (think hangover), and in extreme cases, shut down your vital organs!

How much water should I drink?

How much water to drink a day depends on your age and activity level, and hot and humid summer weather can definitely increase your needs. A common recommendation is for men to drink six to eight glasses of water a day to stay hydrated . Use this free “how much water should you drink a day” calculator to determine your recommended daily H2O intake. Point, click, chug!

If those summer beers are still calling, take a tip from our National Champion and CFL legend Shea Emry: try alternating beer with water for every other drink: beer, water, beer, water … you get the idea. Life is all about balance, right?

Your pee tells the story

The next time you make your bladder gladder, it’s a good idea to double-check the colour of your urine. After all, it can be a sign of good health and proper hydration.

See the photo of the four beers below? From right to left, they provide a handy guide for comparing normal, light-yellow pee with the darker hues that could signal health problems.

Comparison of your pee colour to beer type. Lager is healthy! Stout, see a doctor!

Light yellow: All good on the urine front. Nothing to worry about!
Dark yellow: You’re healthy, but you should drink some water soon.
Amber or honey-coloured: Darker pee is a sign of dehydration. Get some water into you ASAP.
Very dark, almost brown: You’re likely dehydrated and need to get more fluids right away. As this could also be a sign of liver problems, go see your doctor if it doesn’t lighten up after a day or two.

What colour was your last pee? Share your research in the comments below!

This article was originally published on June 20, 2018.

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