Drinking more water, alongside eating more vegetables and doing more exercise, are part of those simple lifestyle changes which can have tremendous impact and can be beneficial to our health.
Despite how important water is, a good proportion of the population admit to drinking enough water. Water is not just an essential nutrient, it literally makes up our entire being.
Depending on your age and fitness level, water can make up between 40 to 70 percent of your entire being.
Although staying hydrated, this may be very challenging when the weather heats up. As we walk, run and exercise our muscles, these muscles generate heat.
And when we are surrounded by hot air, it becomes even more difficult to maintain normal body temperature.
Water is so vital that at 1 to 2 percent loss or body weight at virtue or water loss can hinder performance and affect the body’s ability to cool itself.
The heart pumps harder, blood circulation slows, and the muscles fatigue quite easily. If this loss is as high as 3 to 4 percent, then you will be at risk of developing heart-related illness and injury, such as heat stroke, heat exhaustion and cramps.
The National Institute of Health reveals that even in situations when you are not active, your body is released as much as water or day through perspiration, urine, breath, and sweat. This can sometimes go as high 2-5 quarts.
An average individual is expected to consume as much as 100 ounces of water every day. It is equally important to spread this water intake during the day and not drink 75 ounces at once as this has the tendency to flush electrolytes.
Over-hydration has a tendency to dehydrate the body and can also present several other negative consequences.
How much water do you need?
It can be quite confusing to what is actually much fluid we should actually consume. In reality, there is no one-size-fits-all amount, as there are many factors that influence individual’s need for water, eg age, gender, physical activity level, and climate.
Rather than concentrating on quantity, one of the most effective ways to monitor hydration status is by checking the color of your urine.
Although this may seem like it is basically one of the most effective ways to determine how hydrated you are.
If your urine looks watered down, then you are probably good. But if it is deep yellow or light orange, then you are probably not enough.
How to stay hydrated
In order to remain hydrated, you have to carry out a little planning and preparation. Below are some of the practical ways to stay hydrated regardless of prevailing weather conditions;
1. Drink before you are thirsty:
You shouldn’t wait until you are thirsty before you have a drink. It is healthy to continue to stay hydrated regardless of how you feel.
Your best defense against dehydration is drinking on a constant basis, so you won’t get to the point of thirst.
2. Take water breaks during activities:
Although many people are reluctant to disrupt their workflow for a water break, sacrificing that time for much needed liquid nourishment will have tremendous benefits in the long run.
It is advisable that you take about one glass of water before you embark on any activity. During the activity, you should take between 20-30 ounces of water every 20-30 minutes.
3. Track your intake:
While some people do not take enough water, others do not know exactly how much water they are downing.
Normally, if you drink water from a 16-ounce bottle, then you are expected to drink as many as 8 each day, especially when involved in heavy exercise.
4. Consider an electrolyte drink:
If you are involved in intense exercise, then you should not only restore water but also lose electrolyte. Electrolytes are minerals which regulate the bodily system.
Electrolytes dissolve from the body during exercise include sodium, chloride and potassium. A good sports drink can help to replenish them.
5. Indulge in water-rich fruits and produce:
There are fruits that are immensely rich in water, including melon, grapes and bell peppers. Aside from water, these foods also contain a healthy amount of electrolytes.
It is important to remember that heat exhaustion can happen very quickly, particularly during summertime activities.
If such exhaustion is not immediately followed by other dangerous conditions, such as body damage, seizures, coma or even death can result.
If you feel dizzy, dehydrated, or overheated, then it is advisable that you get out of the sun, sip some water and apply a cooling compress to your neck, head, and chest.