My ten-year-old son wrapped up his soccer season in late spring. His last game was a make-up game that had been moved to early June. And it was HOT.
It was an intense game where all of the kids were playing hard. My son, in particular, was going all out (in typical Active Eater fashion). He pushed himself as hard as he could and scored the final goal to tie the game and finish the season undefeated.
His adrenaline was pumping, and his emotions were running high (as was all the fans’!)
When the game was over he came to me beaming with excitement…quickly followed by a look of almost panic and tears. He looked as if he might pass out.
Being a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner I quickly stepped in and took action.
I had him sit down, reassured him he was fine, and gave him the following:
- juice (thank goodness we brought leftover juice boxes from a party!)
- salty snack
It didn’t take long for his smile and usual demeanor to return.
Why is Hydration Important?
What was happening? And why did that work?
There were two things happening at once.
- adrenal exhaustion
My son had played almost the entire second half without a break. Which meant no hydration. On top of that when he did drink it was just plain water. That is a recipe for disaster.
Hydration is important not only when you are active and sweating, but every single day.
Water is actually the most important nutrient in your body! But in order to properly absorb and utilize it, you need minerals.
A water decrease of just 2% can lead to:
If it gets worse, dehydration can lead to:
- back pain
These are just a few examples to show you how important it is to properly hydrate. Adding minerals to water will also help prevent over-hydration.
Healthy Summer Snack to Support Adrenal Health
But it wasn’t just about the water. My son had a double whammy at his soccer game. Actually, he had trouble every single time he played soccer.
He is in a double exhaustion pattern with very weak adrenals (something I never would have known if I hadn’t done Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis for him!).
After every practice and game, my son had to spend a lot of time resting the next day. Otherwise, we all had to contend with:
- mood swings
- aggressive behavior
- inability to follow directions
We all felt his adrenal exhaustion!
The sad thing is that so many kids are in the exact same situation as my son. But they don’t know it. And neither do their parents. So they all suffer…while continuing to push through life at a fast pace. Which only compounds the problem.
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A child in adrenal exhaustion needs a lot of rest and nutritional support. Two minerals in particular control adrenal function:
When I gave my son water, juice, and a salty snack at his soccer game I wasn’t just randomly giving him food and drink. It was very intentional. I was trying to get sodium and potassium in his system quickly.
His gas tank was on E, and he could feel it. Which is why he had a look of panic on his face. When your adrenals crash, you notice it! He could barely even stand up. We knew he was struggling prior to his final game, but that was our wake-up call. He needs serious adrenal support.
Now we are very intentional about giving him plenty of sodium and potassium every day, along with adequate rest (hooray for summer!). Sometimes it’s in the form of a simple adrenal cocktail. But sometimes we go for a really fun snack to support adrenal health.
Healthy Watermelon Slushie Recipe
Watermelon slushies are perfect for summer hydration and adrenal support!
Watermelon is a great source of both potassium and Vitamin C – two important nutrients for adrenal function.
Combine that with coconut water (loaded with potassium) and Real Salt (sodium), and you’ve got the most delicious hydrating drink around.
As an added bonus you don’t even need to add any sweetener! Watermelon’s natural sweetness is sufficient.Print
A sweet summer drink for kids that supports both hydration and adrenal health.
- 1 cup cubed watermelon
- 1 cup ice cubes (about 6 large)
- 1/4 cup coconut water
- 1/8 tsp. unrefined sea
- 1/8 tsp. wholefood Vitamin C (camu or acerola)
- 1 Tbsp. grassfed collagen (optional)
- 1 Tbsp. honey (optional – if watermelon is underripe)
- Add all ingredients to a high-powered blender. Blend until desired consistency (totally smooth for young children, some ice bits remaining for older kids).
- Pour and serve immediately.
- You can freeze the watermelon first to make the slushie thicker.
- If the slushie melts you can pour it into popsicle molds and freeze for a frozen treat.
- The recipe can easily be doubled.
- Serving Size: 1 cup
- Calories: 63
- Sugar: 9g
- Sodium: 173mg
- Fat: 0g
- Saturated Fat: 0g
- Unsaturated Fat: 0g
- Trans Fat: 0g
- Carbohydrates: 12g
- Fiber: 1g
- Protein: 4g
- Cholesterol: 0mg
Keywords: summer snack, smoothie, frozen treat, dessert
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Healthy Snacks Kids Can Make
Another positive about watermelon slushies is that kids can make them! No cooking is required. Simply add the ingredients, blend, and pour. My 13-year-old Adventurous Eater was more than happy to make this treat for her siblings. Anything new and fun is a win. (If you want to use a food processor, this banana ice cream is naturally sweetened and loaded with potassium!)
Even if your kids aren’t quite old enough to use the blender, they can still make some healthy and fun snacks that support adrenal health.
Here are a few:
- salted watermelon (sounds odd, tastes amazing)
- sliced banana topped with sun butter and Real Salt
- ants on a log with a pinch of Real Salt
- dates with sliced cheese
- whole-milk yogurt with a drizzle of molasses
- organic corn chips dipped in smashed avocado with a pinch of Real Salt
Easy Summer Hydration for Kids
Hydration is important every day. But you really have to be intentional in the summer when kids are playing outside and sweating more. Sometimes plain water is sufficient. But sometimes you need a mineral boost in your drink in order to absorb fluids. Some simple hydrating drinks for kids include:
- homemade pink lemonade
- homemade electrolyte drink
- salted chocolate milk
- brain-booster milkshake
- iced cocoa
Just remember that sodium and potassium are key when it comes to hydration. You can find more tips on keeping kids hydrated HERE.
Adrenal Function in Kids
Although it’s never fun to learn the hard way, my son is now very aware of how important adrenal health really is. He has seen the data on his HTMA (learn more about this powerful test HERE). He has experienced the fatigue that comes from adrenal exhaustion.
And now he knows how to properly hydrate and support his adrenals. At ten years old he is empowered to take ownership of his health!
Weak adrenals don’t define him. He knows that with proper nutrition (like watermelon slushies) and rest he can get his body back to full strength so he can be the carefree kid he wants to be! And the soccer player he wants to be!!
Enjoying watermelon slushies is a fun way to both support adrenal function and hydrate! Get in the kitchen and let your kids help make some today.