Dehydration is a serious but easily avoidable issue. There are many symptoms of the condition, ranging from the relatively mundane headache to the very severe symptoms of heart palpitations and fainting. The only good thing about this condition is that the cure involves nothing more than drinking some water. The guessing game involves figuring out how much water is enough to prevent dehydration in the first place. Some people love water, while others despise the flavor of plain water and need considerable persuasion to drink much of it.
In places where there is a lack of pure drinking water, people are often dehydrated, with wrinkled, dry skin and a variety of symptoms. This may be unavoidable for them, and sickness is their constant companion, not just from not drinking enough water, but also from the diseases they get from drinking impure water when they can get it. But for the majority of us here on this Earth who don’t drink enough of the stuff, there is plenty of drinkable water. It’s just a matter of taking enough time to pour a glass when we are such busy people that we barely make the time to take a break.
Causes of dehydration
Quite often dehydration is not just a lack of drinking water, but is often caused by an underlying disease or condition. For example, diabetes makes the patient urinate too much while simultaneously causing an unquenchable thirst. This makes the person drink a lot, but that water moves out of the body too quickly to do any good. Excessive heat and fever causes sweating, as does too much exercise. If the fluids aren’t quickly replaced, problems arise. Any disease that causes vomiting or diarrhea that lasts for more than a day or two causes fluid loss, and large, burned areas of skin can release fluids and create a lack of water in the body. You can refer to our steps to achieving optimal hydration to fight diseases.
Drink water instead of soft drinks
However, adults are often borderline sick simply because they don’t bother to drink water when they are thirsty. Sometimes people go for power drinks or fruit juice to quench that thirst, but those drinks contain an enormous amount of sugar, which worsens the problem. The same goes for soft drinks, which are probably the worst thing a person can put into his or her mouth. Not only do fizzy drinks rot teeth, they put too much refined sugar into the system and make people vitamin deficient, as well as dehydrated. Some adults think it’s normal to have headaches from time to time or feel sluggish and dizzy. That occasional fainting spell? How many times do we hear people say they are probably just working too hard and not getting enough sleep? It’s easy to write it off as being something else.
Get rid of toxins
Constantly having a dry mouth, or being weak all the time isn’t normal, nor is it normal to be confused a lot instead of using a clear head to think things through. To just not feel good without any good reason is ridiculous when we can clear up a lot of our problems just by drinking a little more water each day. When you think that not urinating a few times each day is a good thing because it means more time to do other more important things, you are in for a rude awakening because that means dehydration has set in and it is getting serious. Think about it… if you can’t urinate, that means your system is filling up with toxins that it can’t remove. The liver struggles more than it should ever have to in order to clean the blood. Plus, you end up with constipation, which gets more painful the longer it lasts.
So how much water is enough?
How much is too much? There are opinions everywhere about this subject, and all are different. Some experts say to drink eight glasses of water a day, but how many of us are really ready to count how many full glasses we drink? Plus, do they mean tall glasses or short ones? They don’t tell us how tall the glasses should be or how often they should be consumed. Other experts say we should constantly be drinking, and carrying around large, bulky bottles of water everywhere we go. Sometimes it seems like some of these ‘pros’ are living in the back pockets of the bottled water industry, as they so readily support it.
Your body will tell you when to drink
Truthfully, the best idea of them all is to simply listen to your body. Drink some water when you’re thirsty, don’t drink when you’re not. If you have a condition that is causing dehydration, first take care of that condition, treat it and drink more so you don’t get worsening symptoms caused by a lack of water. Yes, carry that bottle of water around with you if you won’t be near water all day, drink it when needed, but you don’t need to haul around an entire water cooler to supply your needs. Avoid using beer and soft drinks as replacements for water simply because they have more flavor. Those drinks are fine in small quantities, but they seldom actually quench any thirst. In fact, they’re more likely to make it worse rather than better.
Avoid drinking too much water
Too much water is also a problem. If you are putting the water in faster than the body can remove it, organ damage could result. The liver, for example, can only work so fast, and pushing it too hard makes it suffer. Liver failure is the eventual result when too much damage occurs. The liver is capable of healing itself if given the chance, but habitually drowning it in too much water is almost as bad as drowning it in too much alcohol. The stomach only stretches so far, as do the intestines. The kidneys can only do so much before they begin to fail as well. So, how much water is too much? Believe it or not, that’s difficult to say. So we go back to the best possible rule of thumb… drink when you’re thirsty, and stop when that thirst is quenched.
Urine color chart to measure hydration level
|No color. Transparent||Pale straw color||Transparent yellow||Dark yellow||Amber of honey||Syrup or brown ale||Pink to reddish|
|You’re drinking a lot of water. You may want to cut back.||You’re normal, healthy and well-hydrated.||You’re normal.||Normal. But drink some water soon.||Your body isn’t getting enough water. Drink some now.||You could have a liver disease or severe dehydration. Drink water and see your doctor if it persists.||Have you eaten beets, blueberries or rhubarb recently? If not, you may have blood in your urine. It could be nothing. Or it could be sign of kidney disease, tumors, urinary tract infections, prostate problems or something else. Maybe even lead to mercury poisoning. Contact your doctor immediately.|
It’s surprising how much of the time this rule is ignored, for whatever reason. People need to learn the simple truth about how thirst works and why we actually have it in the first place. Once we start listening to the language our bodies speak, we gain a better grasp on how to keep ourselves strong and healthy far into our advancing years. Here are our suggestions when to avoid taking water.
Maintain a healthy lifestyle
You try to maintain a healthy lifestyle. You understand the self-discipline it often takes to make sound choices. Your dedication helps you look and feel your best. You already know that you need to eat a balanced diet and make good food choices. Most days, you do. You know you need to exercise. You’ve been challenging yourself along the way, and yes, walking a block further from the back parking lot does count as more exercise. You’re doing great!
There’s just one more thing you should be doing. You may already know what that is; you need to drink more water.
The Benefits of Proper Hydration
Try to start the day with hot water and lemon. This is a smart thing to do when you wake up. Early morning is one of the best times to replenish your hydration levels. You may want to add an extra glass before bed. Adding a cup of water before you sleep has additional health benefits. Some of those benefits include:
- Replenishes fluids lost during the day
- Encourages your body to burn a few more calories as your body warms back up
- Helps balance vitamins and minerals from the foods you have eaten
- Increases energy by removing toxins from your digestive tract
- Decreases headaches that can be caused by dehydration
- Reduces under-eye puffiness, a dehydrated body retains fluids
- Replenishes the moisture in your skin while you sleep
Your Hydration Goals
You may have been told that you need to drink 64 ounces of water every day. That’s an excellent place to start. Even though you know you need to drink more water, if you are like most of us, drinking that much water throughout your day can seem a bit daunting.
Develop drinking habits with repetition
Don’t get discouraged. New habits take some time to develop before they begin to feel natural. You will find your stride. Think of it this way, with a daily practice of 8 ounces in the morning and 8 ounces before bed; you only have 48 ounces to go during the day. Good Job, you’re getting there.
What happens when we don’t drink water
Mia Nacamulli has a great lesson about the health benefits of water. If you want to stay healthy and learn how water affects your body just watch the video below.
Proper hydration is essential for our bodies
Keep your focus. You need those fluids every day. Good hydration habits keep essential nutrients flowing to your cells, helps maintain your joints, keeps your body temperature regulated and your skin moist and supple. Proper fluid levels are crucial to almost every system in your body.
- Cardiovascular – dehydration reduces your blood volume and forces your heart to work harder
- Muscles – water carries nutrients and removes waste efficiently, increasing performance
- Joints – water keeps joints lubricated and healthy
- Energy – fatigue is one of the first signs of dehydration
- Cognitive function – water increases the flow of oxygenated blood to your brain
- Elimination – yes, precisely what you think it means
Proper hydration is essential to your good health, and water is your ideal hydration source. Although drinking 64 ounces of water may seem quite challenging, there is plenty of room in your life for other beverages. Herbal tea, fruit juice, or the occasional sports drink have health benefits of their own and do count towards your 64-ounce hydration goal.
5 Easy Ways to Stay Hydrated
During the warmer months, and also after exercise, it is common to experience an increased loss of fluid from our bodies through perspiration. This fluid needs to be replaced. The amount of fluid our body needs depends on factors such as climate, how much you sweat, current health conditions, the type of clothing worn, and how much exercise you do.
Keeping our bodies hydrated is important for many health reasons, including the prevention of kidney stones and to help to maintain a healthy digestive system.
Listed below are some suggestions of simple ways to support hydration levels.
- Drink Water – Drinking water is the simplest thing you can do to stay hydrated. If you find it challenging remembering to drink water throughout the day, try investing in a new water bottle. You may be more likely to use a new bottle than an old one. There are many inexpensive types of water bottles currently on the market with interesting designs and features. Buying a refillable water bottle also ensures you can carry it with you during the day and you don’t have to spend money buying water in throwaway containers. Furthermore, refillable water bottles are better for the environment than disposable ones.
- Make Your Water More Interesting – If you don’t enjoy drinking water, try adding some fruit or vegetables to add some flavor. Some suggestions of organic products to infuse in water include lemon, mint, and cucumber. These ingredients can be added to a pitcher that can be kept in the refrigerator for drinking at home. They can also be added to an infuser water bottle so that you can benefit from the antioxidant properties, vitamins, and minerals, while on the go.
- Eat Some of Your Water Intake – There are many delicious fruits that are in season during the summer months, which are also some of the most thirst-quenching. Fruits with a high water content include watermelons, pineapple, strawberries, oranges, and grapes. Vegetables such as cucumber and celery can also be a hydrating and refreshing snack. Fruits and vegetables also contain electrolytes, including sodium and magnesium, which are important in helping keep the body hydrated.
- Make Popsicles – Popsicles are a fun way to quench your thirst while also cooling down in warmer weather. Try using juice such as watermelon, lemon or orange and add fresh fruits before freezing. The popsicle will not only look great, but it will also taste delicious.
- Try to Limit Caffeine and Alcohol – Caffeine and alcohol have a diuretic effect, which means the body loses fluids more quickly. If you choose to drink caffeine or alcohol, drink them with ice to make them more hydrating. Some suggestions of iced beverages are iced coffee or tea, spritzers, or watered-down shots with ice.
To prevent dehydration, try drinking a glass of water alongside alcoholic drinks.Pro Tip 1
Similarly, try drinking coconut water because it is rich in hydrating nutrients, potassium, and sodium.Pro Tip 2
It is very important to keep our bodies hydrated to support good health. In the summer months and following exercise, our bodies lose more fluid through perspiration, and so we need to make more of a conscious effort to ensure we consume enough fluids to maintain hydration.
Water is the foundation of life and nature. Water is the foundation of good health, inside and out. Have a glass in the morning, a glass in the evening, and focus on staying hydrated throughout your day. You’ll get there. Good Job!