National Hydration Day
Hydration: Water is Life
No living organism can survive without water and humans are no exception. Our bodies are made up of approximately 75% water and yet most of us forget to ingest optimal levels of it. As temperatures rise this summer, and you find yourself outdoors playing sports, traveling, or simply relaxing in the sun, it is key to remind ourselves to drink plenty of fluids to stay healthy.
As yesterday was National Hydration Day, it’s a great time to shed light on the importance of maintaining your body properly hydrated and some helpful tips on how to do it. After all, when the rain clears we will be reminded that it is summer.
The Importance of Good Hydration
Reasons to Drink Water
Our bodies require water to perform a multitude of functions like regulating body temperature, lubricating our joints, carry nutrients and oxygen to our cells, flushing out waste and more. If we do not replenish our water supply throughout the day, our body won’t be able to perform these functions properly. Here are some of the reason why you should drink plenty of water every day:
It is critical to your heart’s health: When you are dehydrated, your heart must work harder to pump blood through the blood vessels into the muscles.
Dehydration is a serious condition: Being dehydrated can cause serious health problems that can range from swollen feet, headaches, heat stroke, organ damage, and even death.
Bad Breath: Your body needs water to produce saliva, one of the purposes of saliva is to curtail the proliferation of bacteria, if you are not producing enough saliva you will have an overgrowth of bacteria which cause bad breath.
Dry Skin: Being dehydrated causes blood volume to decrease and this can lead to dry skin, wrinkles and skin laxity.
Muscle Cramps: Water is necessary to help the body maintain normal temperatures, when your body overheats the muscles tend to cramp up, in addition, changes in electrolytes, sodium, and potassium levels due to sweating can also lead to muscle cramps.
Weight Problems: Proper hydration helps control calories. In contrast, insufficient water intake will help create a more sluggish metabolism and high blood cholesterol.
Kidney Problems: Our kidneys’ job is to ride the body of toxins. Insufficient hydration not only puts kidneys to do extra work, it provides an ideal scenario for bacteria growth resulting in potential infections and inflammation.
How Much is Enough?
Image source: goodmorningcenter.com
How Much Water Should I Drink a Day?
The amount of water that you should drink a day varies according to a variety of factors:
Amount of exercise/level of activity
Amount of clothing
Amount of perspiration
Remember that by the time you are thirsty, you are already becoming dehydrated. For this reason, it’s always best to drink water regularly to maintain proper hydration.
Symptoms of Dehydration
Know the Warning Signs of Dehydration
Altus Emergency Centers encourages you to recognize your body’s warning signs when faced with dehydration.
Have a headache,
Have a dry mouth,
Feel extremely fatigued,
Your heart is pounding for no apparent reason.