How to keep well hydrated

It looks as though it is going to be a very hot weekend coming up, some of you may decide to make the most of it by sitting out in the sun, having a barbeque or even going for a run doing some exercise. Whatever you’re doing, it’s vital to make sure that you remain well hydrated. This blog is going to explain the causes and signs of dehydration and what to do when you are dehydrated.

Dehydration occurs when your body loses more fluid you are taking in. Dehydration upsets the balance of minerals (salts and sugars) which affects bodily function. Water makes up 2/3rds of a healthy human body and works to lubricate joints and the eyes. Water also helps to aid digestion, flush out waste and toxins and keep skin healthy.

The early signs of dehydration are feeling thirsty, lightheaded, dark coloured and strong smelling urine and passing urine less often than normal. When dehydration is getting worse, you will begin experiencing headaches, tiredness and a dry mouth. When dehydration becomes severe, symptoms include tiredness, no passing of urine for eight hours, dry and saggy skin, blood in stools and even seizures.

When you feel dehydrated then you should drink plenty of fluids, water, semi-skimmed milk, squash or fruit juice. Avoid drinking caffeine drinks and any fizzy drinks. When you are exercising you should be drinking more water than normal to replace the fluids lost through sweat. Fluids should be drunk regularly when exercising. There is varied research on how much water you should drink per day. The general consensus is to drink around one and a half litres per day. This should be higher if you are exercising, have a physical job or are in a warm climate. When exercising, you should be drinking 400-600ml of water for every hour. If you are well hydrated then you should rarely be feeling thirsty and always have a clear or light yellow coloured urine.

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