Let’s get Hydrated!Author: Jan Fernandez Posted: August 11, 2015
I’ve always been a water drinker, but lately I’ve decided that increasing my consumption during this extreme heat wouldn’t be such a bad idea. I was a little skittish about too much water though because I have heard that it can mess with your electrolytes. So I did some research and have actually found some pretty amazing facts and put a few myths to rest.
According to an article I read in the Huffington Post, there are several myths that need setting straight.
Myth 1 – Dehydration is uncomfortable but not dangerous.
Okay, even I never heard that one before. Every single cell in the human body requires water to function properly. Easiest way to tell if you’re getting dehydrated is to watch your urine output. I know, it’s weird, but if your urine is pale yellow, you’re getting enough water. You might not notice that you’re getting sluggish or think that a headache could be related to hydration, but when you go to the bathroom and notice that your urine is a dark yellow, you better get some fluids in you.
Here is a list of symptoms according to Family Doctor.org: Little or no urine (darker than usual), dry mouth, sleepiness or fatigue, extreme thirst, headache, confusion, dizziness or lightheaded feeling, no tears when crying.
Myth 2 – Everyone needs to drink eight glasses of water a day.
Nope – funny, men need to drink more than women! Men need about three liters with women only get about 2.2 liters. And, with that said, water isn’t the only source to count towards fluid. Any fluids count, however, coffee and soda are not recommended because of the caffeine. Even food counts. About 20% of the average person’s water intake comes from food.
Myth 3 – Exercisers need sports drinks
Again nope – unless you’ve been intensely exercising for more than an hour, water will do just fine. You don’t deplete electrolyte and glycogen until you’ve hit that 1.5 hour mark.
Those pains are real. Water is needed to carry acidic waste away from our cells, when we are dehydrated, our nerves interpret the waste as pain. Ouch! Speaking of getting rid of bad stuff, our kidneys and liver need plenty of water to do their deep-cleaning work.
A study conducted by Loughborough University found that just a 5% drop in water levels in the body can cause a 25 – 30% drop in energy too. Even a 3% drop in water can cause fuzzy brain.
I also thought it was funny until I started reading up on the whole water intake thing, but people have been commenting lately that I had a glow about me. Well, apparently well hydrated cells lead to more elastic skin, which is where the glowing comes from.
You don’t need to carry around a two quart pitcher of water like I do, but you should at least carry a bottle of water wherever you go. When you think you’re hungry, instead of bellying up to the food bar, drink some water. Our brain sometimes confuses thirst with hunger. And, when you’re at a restaurant, have water, it will keep you hydrated, you’ll eat less food, and it’s free!
Now I’m heading into my swimming pool of water for some external hydration during this heatwave. Stay HY drated !