Before grabbing that diet cola at lunch you might want to think twice. Your body depends on water for survival and having adequate hydration is the key to having every cell, tissue and organ in your body function correctly to ensure good health.
Did you know that your body craves water and that your brain alone is 95 percent water? This explains why just a 2 percent drop in your body's water supply can cause dehydration symptoms - fuzzy thinking and dizziness are among just a few. Good hydration is so important and here are just a few reasons why:
It forms the fluid that surrounds your joints.
It helps regulate your body temperature.
It helps move food through your intestines, eliminating waste and detoxifying your body.
It can reduce your risk of colon cancer by 45 percent (if you drink your eight glasses a day).
You lose water each day when you go to the bathroom, sweat, and even when you breathe. You lose water even faster when the weather is really hot, when you exercise, or if you have a fever. Vomiting and diarrhea can also lead to rapid fluid loss. If you don't replace the water you lose, your body will become dehydrated.
How to know if you are dehydrated?
Little or no urine, urine that is darker than usual
Sleepiness or fatigue
Feeling dizzy or lightheaded
No tears when crying
Some people are at higher risk of dehydration, including those who get a lot of exercise, have certain medical conditions, are sick, or are not able to get enough fluids during the course of the day. Older adults are also at higher risk. As you age, your brain may be unable to sense dehydration or the ability to send signals for thirst.
Don't wait until you notice symptoms of dehydration to act. It can be hard to recognize when you're dehydrated, especially as you age. Actively prevent dehydration by drinking up, grab a glass and get chugging!
Information provided by Lifetime of Care and Family Doctor.org
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