Hydration and Your Health
Water is crucial for our survival. Our bodies are made of approximately 60% water. That said, you can imagine how important it is for us to be sure that we get the proper intake of water so we don’t suffer from the intense effects of dehydration. In this week’s blog we are going to discuss the importance of remaining hydrated, as dehydration is a lot more common than many people think. The key to having good health does not just lie in the food, lifestyle, or posture choices that you make, but also within the fluids that you put in your body on the daily.
With it being summer, there is hotter weather, more beach days, and more time outdoors. We spend the majority of our summer season outside; whether on the beach, at a pool, at a party, or just enjoying a simple walk. Summer weather is inviting to most people and most people do take advantage of it. However, with the hotter weather comes the possibility of dehydration. Dehydration is that state at which your body is losing more fluid than it is taking in. When this happens your body does not have enough fluids, mainly water, to proceed with carrying out your body’s normal functions.
Dehydration can occur for a number of reasons however the two most common reasons are: not drinking enough water in general and not drinking enough water when your body is expelling fluids. What is meant when we say that your body is expelling fluids, we are talking mainly about sweating. If you are outside in the sun and your body is producing a lot of sweat, your body is losing a lot of fluids which needs to be replenished in order for your body to perform effectively. You can also become dehydrated even if you are not outside. If you are exercising indoors and are producing a lot of sweat your body will still need you to increase your water intake.
Some other causes of dehydration can be:
- working outside
- exercising outside
- increased urination
Most individuals are in fact dehydrated. Many people don’t feel the need to drink water when they can have soda, ice teas, energy drinks, etc. However these are not replenishing to your body. These drinks are loaded with added sugars, colors, and chemicals; all of which your body does not need or like. In fact, prolonged consumption of these beverages can lead to a multitude of disorders: diabetes, obesity, heart disease, and more. Your body is made of water therefore it craves water. You can not go wrong with substituting your energy drinks or soda with a glass of water.
Some cases of dehydration can be easily spotted while some other can not be. In fact, symptoms of dehydration actually vary due to age. Below are the symptoms for dehydration in respects to the individuals age group:
- Infants or young children:
- dry mouth
- dry tongue
- no wet diaper for 3 hours or more
- sunken cheeks, eyes, and soft spots on head
- extreme thirst
- less frequent urination
- dry mouth
- fatigue and or dizziness
- dark colored urine
Chronic dehydration is a big issue in today’s day and age, especially due to consumption of the wrong fluids. However, if dehydration is not identified and treated within a certain amount of time there can be even more serious complications, such as: heat stroke, seizures, low blood volume, and more. Some of these complications can be life threatening, while others can be cured with a little rest and rehydration. But just because some of these conditions are treatable that does not mean it is okay to keep your water intake at a low volume.
The best way to prevent dehydration is to be sure that you are consuming enough water on the daily despite what activities that you are doing. You also want to be sure that you are consuming enough fluids when you are sick, as this can cause your body to be expelling a multitude of ways. You even want to take your water intake into account with the weather, be sure that you are drinking more when it is hot outside as this is the most common period where you can get dehydration.
If there is one thing that you can take from this blog, it is that hydration is one of the keys to health. If your body is not thriving with fluids then your health can be at risk. So take this time to ask yourself, when was the last time you drank the daily intake of water that your body needs? It is suggested that you drink half of your weight in ounces each and every day. When was the last time that you did that? If you have trouble answering that question, grab yourself a glass of water and begin to take your health into your own hands.