You have commonly heard the phrase, “MAKE SURE YOU ARE DRINKING ENOUGH WATER.” Hydration is important for the body not only as a daily practice, during physical activity, but also plays an important role in the aid of weight loss. The human body is made up of approximately 50-75% water. The percentage of water varies based on age and gender.
Fluid intake is essential to good health. Water is needed to regulate your temperature, maintain joint health and to deliver essential vitamins and minerals. Dehydration leads to impaired nerve and muscle function due to the imbalance of sodium and potassium within the body. Brain and muscle function become impaired causing decreased muscle coordination and impaired athletic performance.
Early signs and symptoms of dehydration include headaches, dry mouth, chills, dry skin, excessive thirst, and fatigue. The color of ones urine is a good indicator of proper hydration. Improper hydration will cause your urine to become a dark yellow. Signs of worsening dehydration are increased body temperature, heart rate and body temperature. If you become confused, have vision disturbances and difficulty breathing seek immediate medical attention.
Your risk of dehydration increases when you sweat excessively, increase your exercise intensity and duration, when the temperature is high and at high altitudes.
FUN FACTS ABOUT WATER:
- Did you know you burn approximately one calorie for each cold fluid ounce of water you drink?
- Effect on physical performance: Lean muscle in the human body is made up of ~80% water. Lean muscle needs water to properly function. Therefore by increasing your water intake, you can increase you strength and endurance.
- Water is responsible for maintaining a healthy metabolism.
- Water assists with transportation and absorption of vitamins within the body.
- Water aids in digestion, transports and removes waste products from the blood.
- Water also helps support the immune system.
- You should be drinking ½ oz of water for every pound that you weigh each day. Enjoy the benefits that such a simple natural substance can bring!