I know very few people who get 64 oz of any fluid in a day, let alone water. That is the minimum amount for complete hydration. This means that some of us are walking around in a state of chronic dehydration and that will take a toll on your health.
Energy: Do you feel tired and sluggish? Don’t reach for an energy drink, reach for some water. If it’s particularly hot or you have been exercising heavily, reach for a sports drink. The main reason Gatorade was invented was dehydration. Their football team was great up until the end of the third quarter. After that, they had little energy.
The school asked the science department to find out why and to come up with a solution…which they did. The first batch tasted horrible, but after some tweaking it seemed to resolve the problem. The team was both dehydrated and drained of electrolytes. Replacing them made them the only team that came into the fourth quarter with the energy to finish the game.
Headaches: This is something I am very familiar with. Until I started consciously drinking more fluids and added a sports drink to my summer hydration list I would get dehydration headaches. I don’t know how bad a migraine headache is, but I can tell you that when I have a dehydration headache it’s so bad I throw up.
Kidneys: This is where your life is on the line. Dehydration can lead to kidney disease and kidney failure. The kidneys filter toxins from the blood stream. It’s more difficult for them to accomplish this when there isn’t sufficient fluid intake. Serious dehydration can shut down the kidneys quickly. Chronic dehydration takes place over time. Both are deadly.
Skin: One test for dehydration is grasping some skin and gently pulling it. If it snaps back, there is little to no dehydration. If it remains raised, it’s a serious problem. That is a sign of severe dehydration.
Here are a few tips to help you stay hydrated. These are tips I use and I recommend to my clients. When sitting at a computer, I have a bottle of water or a glass of sports drink beside me. I automatically reach for it as I sit there and can finish an entire bottle in two hours. I keep one by my bed as well. I have a tendency to wake up several times and I drink water when I do.
Fruits, vegetables, soups and Jell-O can also count towards your fluid intake. If you can handle the sugar, fruit juice is also a tasty way to get in the required 64 oz. In the instance of juice, I’m not referring to fruit punch or other sugar laced drinks. Not from concentrate fruit juice still has the natural sugars the fruit came with.
Do I get 64 oz. every day? Probably not, but I try. I can tell you that these tips have drastically reduced the number of headaches I have. It really is worth the effort.