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How Hydration Affects Your Health
Hydration is extremely important when it comes to living a healthy lifestyle. Hydration allows your body to function properly, which in turn helps you perform your daily tasks.
Drinking water is the best way to stay hydrated, but there are other factors that play a role in maintaining your body’s hydration.
Here are some ways that hydration affects your health and how you can ensure you are always hydrated.
Why Water and Hydration are Important
Water is vital for our body, health, and everyday functions. After all, water makes up a majority of our body weight.
All of our cells, tissues, and organs need water to properly work and do their job.1 Some examples of how water helps the body include aiding the heart in pumping blood and allowing our muscles to move.2
According to Healthline Media, here are some reasons why staying hydrated is necessary:
- Water flushes out waste from the body and aids in digestion
- Water regulates the temperature of the body
- Water helps your brain function and improves mood
- Water helps protects the body’s tissues and joints
- Water aids in skin repair and reproduction
Dehydration is the absence of water in your body.5 You are at risk for dehydration if you do not drink enough water or if you lose too much water through perspiration.
Symptoms of dehydration include:
- Headache or dizziness
- Flushed skin or swollen feet
- Constipation or dark-colored urine
Dehydration can also affect you mentally, causing you to feel confused or anxious.5 These side effects are due to the fact that your body does not have enough of water to maintain your cognitive functioning.
A lack of water in the body can cause your heart and kidneys to work harder. This is because they are reliant on water to help perform their processes.
If untreated, dehydration can become a serious risk factor very quickly. Severe dehydration can lead to kidney stones, kidney failure, or heatstroke.5
To avoid these risks, focus on ways you can consume water and remain hydrated.
Ways to Consume Water
When it comes to drinking water, it is important to know the appropriate amount you need each day.
This can be determined based on your weight and level of physical activity. A calculation to try would be drinking half of your body weight in ounces. For example, if someone weighs 150 pounds, they should drink 75 ounces of water a day.
How much water you need can also depend on your lifestyle and activity level. If you are outside in the sun, standing up working most of the day, or sweat for an extended amount of time, you may need more water.
When water leaves your body as perspiration, it is necessary to increase your water intake to ensure you’re staying hydrated.
Eating the right foods
Did you know that eating the right foods can aid in hydration as well?
The key to this is eating foods with a large amount of water in them. This includes non-starchy fruits and vegetables.
While there are many foods that naturally contain water, here are a few examples:
If you struggle with drinking enough water throughout the day, try eating more foods that contain water.
You might think that you drink plenty of water throughout the day, but still experience symptoms of dehydration.
Here are some tips on how to ensure you’re staying hydrated:
- If you consume liquids such as coffee, soda, or tea, make sure to compensate with the appropriate amount of water to flush these liquids out. These kinds of drinks that contain caffeine cause you to lose more fluid, which can lead to dehydration.2
- If you find it hard to drink water, try carrying a large canteen or reusable water bottle with you. You can even add fresh fruit, such as berries or lemons, to give the water some flavor.
- Set a daily goal of how much water you will drink each day. This can encourage you to drink the right amount.
Saber Healthcare Encourages You to Stay Hydrated This Season
Saber Healthcare encourages you to stay healthy and hydrated. Try implementing one or more of these tips to remain hydrated this summer.
Saber Healthcare is an organization dedicated to providing consultant services to long term care providers. This article is for informational purposes and is not meant to be seen as professional advice. Please consult with a medical expert before relying on the information provided.
- “Hydration: Why It’s So Important.” American Academy of Family Physicians, familydoctor.org. June 16th, 2020. Accessed April 9th, 2021. https://familydoctor.org/hydration-why-its-so-important/.
- “Staying Hydrated – Staying Healthy.” American Heart Association, heart.org. August 6th, 2014. Accessed April 9th, 2021. https://www.heart.org/en/healthy-living/fitness/fitness-basics/staying-hydrated-staying-healthy.
- Silver, Natalie and Butler, Natalie. “Why Is Water Important? 16 Reasons to Drink Up.” Healthline Media, healthline.com. June 30th, 2020. Accessed April 8th, 2021. https://www.healthline.com/health/food-nutrition/why-is-water-important.
- “4 Benefits of Drinking Water.” Saber Healthcare Group, saberhealth.com. January 17th, 2021. Accessed April 6th, 2021. https://www.saberhealth.com/news/blog/4-benefits-of-drinking-water.
- “Dehydration.” Cleveland Clinic, clevelandclinic.org. February 16th, 2021. Accessed April 9th, 2021. https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/treatments/9013-dehydration.