My friend (85) is dehydrated. How can I get him to drink more fluids?

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He does not like water, Gatorade, or any of those kinds of drinks.

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Thank you, cwillie, for helping dispelling the myth that drinks with caffeine defeat the purpose of hydration. No, they do not. If if coffee is what Dad or Mom drank all their lives, it ain't killed 'em yet.

And FF, the watermelon is a good idea. Many of us get most of our liquids in our food. Our bodies need liquid so much they are very efficient at extracting moisture even out of soda crackers! Snacks like fresh fruit, soup, a glass of tomato juice, a spicy v-8 with some pepper sauce in it, Jell-o, pudding, ice cream, a root beer float, milk, milkshakes, canned peaches in light syrup, applesauce, Popsicles, oatmeal -- lots of things can contribute to hydration besides water.

Remember the goal is to keep him hydrated, not necessarily to have him drink a certain amount of water. Food counts, too. Of course keeping hydrated is simple if you like to drink water. It is surprising to me how many of our parents don't. So we don't get to accomplish this task the simple way. But the other options aren't too hard.

Good luck!
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I have this problem with my mom too. I find it best to rotate drinks (trying different ones) at different times. mom likes her drinks cold...so an insulated glass is a must.

Try boost or ensure...these are always consumed by mom quickly and provide extra nutrition.

Try chicken or beef broth or bullion...often this will go down when other drinks will not...because it is a food!
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Maggie is right, use room temperature water... that is what I have. Ice cold water will upset my stomach. Learned room temp water while in Europe as that was the norm there.
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This is from the mayo clinic website:

Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D.
It is true that caffeinated fluids can contribute to your daily fluid requirement.

Drinking caffeine–containing beverages as part of a normal lifestyle doesn't cause fluid loss in excess of the volume ingested. While caffeinated drinks may have a mild diuretic effect — meaning that they may cause the need to urinate — they don't appear to increase the risk of dehydration.

Still, caffeinated drinks can cause headaches and insomnia in some people. Water is probably your best bet to stay hydrated. It's calorie–free, caffeine–free, inexpensive and readily available.
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Try just plain old room temperature water. If he won't drink it, says he's not thirsty, and is still dehydrated, tell him his mind us tricking him and that he should drink some. Have is constantly available at arm's reach. If he still doesn't drink, let him be.
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My dad is the same. I got him an assortment of flavored drink mixes, the sort sold to add to water bottles (although he uses a measure cup). He also started making iced coffee using instant decaf powder--not ideal, but better than nothing.
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Ah ha, I just google milk for dehydration and I was surprised that milk is just as good as water.... you think he might like milk? I know some adults think milk is just for kids. What about chocolate milk? Carnation Instant Breakfast, packet mixed with milk.

Big bowl of watermelon? It's 90% water.
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Thanks for the suggestions freqflyer. He does not have High Blood Pressure but does not like fizzy drinks or Iced Tea. That is what is so frustrating. All of his adult life he drank coffee which defeats the purpose of being hydrated.
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If your friend has to watch his sodium intake because of high blood pressure or kidney issues, products like Gatorade are high in sodium [about 110 mg per cup]. What about ginger ale [about 26 mg per can]. Sodas of his youth, like Dr. Pepper are also high in sodium.

Does he like ice tea? There are ice tea bags that are easy to use, Twinings makes them in a variety of tea flavors.

I understand the frustration about being hydrated.... I am not a big water drinker, either.
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