It’s heating up out there, stay hydrated!
Do you get enough fluids? Water is the single most critical nutrient needed for health, growth, development and the balance of systems. Your body is nearly ¾ water, about 60-70%.
Smart Health Benefits of Water and Hydration:
- Regulation of body temperature, blood pressure and heart rate, lubricates joints, protects organs and tissues
- Supports healthy skin, nails, and bowel function
- Helps you stay energized and focused
- May reduce headaches and kidney stones
How much water do you need? Everyone is different; it depends on his or her overall weight and exercise level and other factors. Aim for half of your body weight in ounces of fluid per day as a minimum.
Daily Fluid Requirement Calculation:
A person that weighs roughly 150 pounds would need about 75-150 ounces (oz.) of fluid each day. This is daily intake and does not consider losses associated with exercise. Here is how to calculate the range: Take your Weight (Weight in pounds) × 0.5 = oz./day and then Weight (Weight in pounds) × 1.0= oz./day
What can cause dehydration?
- Illness, extreme heat, excessive sweating, excessive alcohol and caffeine intake.
What happens when you are dehydrated and how can you tell? Dehydration is a deficiency of water in the body. It occurs when the body is not taking in enough water/fluids to compensate the water losses. You lose ~2.5 Liters (84oz.) of water from breathing, through the skin, and urination during normal circumstances.
Symptoms of Mild- Severe Dehydration:
- Mild to Extreme Thirst(Dry mouth and skin)
- Reduced urination or sweating
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
- Feelings of sleepiness or tiredness
- Rapid breathing and heartbeat
How can you tell if you are well hydrated?
Your urine color should resemble lemonade, with a light yellow stream. Aim for 1-2 on the scale.
You do not have to drink plain water, add in fruit and low calorie flavors. Foods that have high water content will help as well. Yogurt, soups, smoothies, fresh fruits, protein drinks and vegetables all have high water content.
Hydration and Sweating:
Healthy adults can produce 32 oz. of sweat during an hour of moderate to vigorous indoor exercise. Be sure to increase your fluids before, during and after exercise. Drink sports drinks after 60 minutes of working out or more to replace minerals and vitamins.
You can injure your body and become very ill without proper fluids. You can also drink too much too quickly causing severe cramping and minerals to become out of balance. Over hydration can be extremely dangerous, don’t overdo it.
What should you limit as far as fluid intake? Alcohol and caffeine in the forms of coffee and tea can add to dehydration levels if intake is excessive. Caffeine prompts the body to lose water through urination. Watch out for high caffeine drinks when fluid status is low.
Choose from a wide variety of beverages to satisfy your fluid needs ranging from bottled water, 100% juices, unsweet teas, and sports drinks.
- Fitness Basics and Staying Hydrated
- Causes of Dehydration
- Caffeine Informer
- Quest for hydration recipes
Hospitality Dietitian Mindy Diller, MS, RDN, LD email@example.com