Physiology studies emphasize that hydration is important because the body is comprised mostly of water. The proper balance between water and electrolytes in our bodies really determines how most of our body systems function, including nerves and muscles. Without constant hydration through water, the body begins to shut down and will start to show symptoms of severe hydration. This consists of altered behavior (anxiety, confusion or not being to stay awake), faintness that won’t go away even when you lie down, inability to stand or walk, rapid breathing, weak but rapid pulse and loss of consciousness.
Sad to say, most people are not aware of how critical is the difference a few percentage points can affect our body’s energy levels. Not many know that for every 2 percent decrease in normal levels of body water, the human body can suffer a 20 percent loss of energy.
So how much water does out body need to stay hydrated efficiently? The rule of thumb is to drink 8-ounce glasses of water a day. There is actually no scientific basis for this rule but the best guideline is to drink enough water that would make you go to the bathroom every two to four hours. You should be drinking enough water so that you urinate every four hours and that your urine must be light in color. Nutritionists and dietitians say that if you go from 8.a.m. to 3 p.m., and your urine is very dark, that means you haven’t had enough to drink.
The exact amount of water we need per day really depends on the individual. If you exercise, for example, you lose a lot more water through sweat and breathing such that your need for water is much higher. In situations like this, you should not wait to feel thirsty before drinking water to replace fluid loss. The best advice then is to obey your thirst to avoid dehydration. The effects of dehydration can be very devastating. If you feel the onset of dehydration, you must obtain immediate medical care. The signs and symptoms o dehydration include extreme thirst, lack of urination, shriveled skin, dizziness and confusion.
If you need convincing that you should keep yourself hydrated, imagine a fish that has strayed out of the water for a prolonged period. Like the fish, we need water to live.
- The Truth About How Much Water You Should Really Drink (health.usnews.com)
- Riding Safety: Motorcycle Riding in the Heat Means Staying Hydrated (allstate.com)
- Hydrate Yourself (celibertifitness.wordpress.com)
- Myths About Hydration for a Healthy Body (medindia.net)
- How To Figure Out How Much Water You Really Need (businessinsider.com)
- Hydration and You: Why Pure Water is Important (aquasafecanada.com)
- Michelle Obama Wants You To Drink More Water (huffingtonpost.com)