Food which, like Bivo, allows you to feed and rehydrate at the same time

The reasons why an adequate hydric intake is essential for human body are many. Inside water all chemical reactions of the organism happen, but not only that: with water we can dilute food during digestion, eliminating metabolism waste and regulating body temperature. And much more!

In general, during the day a healthy adult individual should drink at least 1 litre and a half of water, plus half a litre more of water coming from food. The advantage of intaking water through some food is that in this way we are able to rehydrate and, at the same time, feed. All of this does not happen if we ingest just water, whose caloric content is of course zero. Water contains mineral salts, but it is devoid of macronutrients like proteins, lipids and carbs.

Food which are able to rehydrate and feed us at the same time can be liquid food, like milk, yogurt, kefir, vegetable drinks and Bivo, or solid food, like fruits and vegetables.

Let’s start from milk (made by water for the 87%), often considered as a “complete food” because it contains proteins with high biological value, carbs as simple sugars like lactose and easy to digest lipids. It contains also minerals like calcium, phosphorus, sodium and potassium, vitamins of group B, and fat-soluble vitamins like D and A. All these components make milk a precious food, but not really a complete one: it lacks important components like iron, vitamin C and fibers. What kind of milk is better to choose? Whole or skimmed milk? It is important to consider that whole milk contains a bigger quantity of vitamin D and A, since they are fat-soluble vitamins linked to fat particles. For this reason, skimmed milk contains far less vitamin D and A, while totally skimmed milked contains none of them. Therefore, it is better to prefer whole milk if we want to intake all its precious nutrients, if we don’t have any issue related to a hypocaloric diet or we don’t suffer from hypercholesterolemia.

Another dairy product, yogurt, is part of the category of food which are able to rehydrate and feed you at the same time.
In fact, according to the different types, it contains among the 78 and the 85% of water. Inside yogurt we can find the nutrients which are present in milk, plus the presence of lactic ferments, which can provide a regulating action on the composition of the intestinal bacterial flora, improving the immune defenses and regularizing the intestinal functionality. We should anyway specify that, especially if we eat a lot, the majority of the bacteria which are present in yogurt does not pass through the acid  barrier of the stomach and does not really contribute for the probiotic function.

So, if we want to obtain a better repopulation of bacterial flora, it is better to choose kefir, which is a fermented product, used since antiquity and originated in Caucasus. It contains a combination of beneficial bacteria and yeast. Bacteria and yeast, mixed together, form grains which added to milk generate fermentation. The microorganisms of kefir are able to penetrate the gastric barrier more effectively than those of yogurt and reach the intestine while they are still alive. Moreover, kefir is more digestible and rich in vitamins, enzymes, minerals and lactic acid. In particular, the lactic acid is very useful for our organism, because it helps to regulate intestinal pH and to inhibit the growth of pathogenic bacteria.

For who is intolerant or allergic to milk or who chose to be vegan, plant origin drinks represents another type of food which is both hydrating and nutritious. Let’s make a list of the most common ones:

Rice drinks: it is rich in simple sugars, derives from spontaneous hydrolysis of starch, which together with other features, make this drink particularly energetic and easy to digest. Unlike cow milk, the lipid fraction is modest, pour in saturated fats and rich in polyunsaturated fats.

Soya drinks: it presents a rich lipid fraction made by unsaturated fats (“good fats”), unlike cow milk, again. Moreover, the protein intake is similar to the ones of milk, with soy proteins that have a high nutritional power, even if it is still lower than that of cow milk.

Coconut drinks: it is extracted from the pulp of coconut and it is not to be confused with the water that you can find inside the coconut. It contains lauric acid, a substance which increases good cholesterol (HDL), but you still should not exagerate with the quantity because it provides a lot of calories, even if you can find different versions with different level of fat content.

Almond drinks: it provides a good quantity of antioxidant, like vitamin E, and it is rich in unsaturated fatty acids (in particular, oleic), which are great for the cardiovascular system. It is also rich in magnesium and in a protein, called Amandine, which helps to decrease high cholesterol levels.

Until now we have spoken about liquid food like milk or yogurt, while we can also add some solid food rich in water and nutrients, like fruits and vegetables. It is obvious to say that more or less all food in this category, if fresh, is rich in water, but it is important to remember some of them which have plenty of it. For example, the cucumber, watermelon, strawberry, melon, celery, lettuce and tomato. Among all solid food the cucumber has particularly a lot of water: 96,7%. Intaking water through vegetables has its advantages, because they contain also fibers, which are able to hold back water, blocking an immediate elimination through the kidneys. With vegetables you do not only intake water, but also sugar (fructose, mostly), fibers, vitamins, minerals and phytocompounds. Phytocompounds are substances with a beneficial action for the organism, because most of them are antioxidants as well. Among the most famous we can mention flavonoids, which are present for example inside grapes and blueberries. Every vegetable has different types of phytocompounds, and many of them are recent discoveries.

We can finish the list speaking about BIVO, because it is another food which is able to feed and rehydrate at the same time. This is because, without any doubt, it is nutritious from many different points of view: it is a complete meal, it has an adequate caloric intake, it has a good balance of macronutrients, it contains many vitamins, mineral salts and also fibers. To all this, you add water, which hydrates your body. BIVO, therefore, allows you to have both all the nutrients you need, but also the right hydration. This is without any doubt ad advantage, especially for who does endurance activities, like trekking or excursions, because Bivo is a practical solution. It is also very easy to digest and can be drunk during the excursion, allowing you to have a constant hydration. In addition, the high content of ingredients with a low glycemic index means that the energy Bivo provides is slow releasing, which is particularly useful for endurance activities.

Paola Salgarelli, Biologist Nutritionist, specialist in Food Science