Proper Hydration Important
Water is the essential thing most of us, especially older Americans, children and pregnant women, do’nt get enough of in our diets. The body needs to stay hydrated to function efficiently, particularly in the hot summer months. Water should not be substituted for any other beverages soda, juices, adult beverages, etc. Though these options may temporarily quench your thirst the effects of insufficient water intake are far reaching.
On average, the rule of thumb when it comes to drinking water is to drink eight glasses daily. Most of us are encouraged to drink more than this amount as the body’s need for water is critical for the body to perform its necessary functions. Water protects and cushion organs, lubricates joints, regulates body temperature, increases energy and removes digestive waste.
The human body can survive for up to six weeks without food. One cannot live for more than a week without water. The body is 70% fluid. We lose about three quarts of water a day through sweating, exhaling, waste and normal daily functions. It is extremely important that we drink enough water to replenish this loss of fluids and stay hydrated daily. Lack of proper hydration may lead to constipation, headaches, and dry skin indicating your need to increase your water intake. Failure to do so increases your chances for dehydration, a potentially critical condition.
Dehydration Warning Signs
Persistent elevated temperature
Infrequent and dark colored urine
Light-headedness, loss of energy
Water retention problems
Muscle or joint soreness
Drink at least eight glasses of water daily to remain hydrated.
Drink eight to 10 ounces of water every 15 to 20 minutes during a run and another 10 to 12 ounces immediately following your workout.
Have your child take water breaks every 15 to 20 minutes while playing outside or participating in a sport activity.
When packing your car for a trip don’t forget to include water in the cooler.
Don’t overdo it. Take time throughout the day for a glass of water whether or not you feel you need it. If you wait until you feel thirsty you’re already experiencing dehydration.
Don’t substitute soda or juice as a proper beverage to prevent dehydration. Most sodas contain sugar and caffeine that may speed up dehydration.
Don’t drink surface water from lakes, rivers or pools. This water is often untreated and could contain harmful contaminants.