Most of us have heard about the bad affects of not drinking enough water. But not many know that over hydration can also affect our health in adverse ways. But there is a good reason why most people don’t know about this. It’s because most people usually don’t even fulfill their minimum daily water intake limit. Besides, many of us are drinking all sorts of fluids which are causing dehydration.
How Does Over-Hydration Affect your Body?
Don’t think that you are doing a great job by drinking lots of water. There is a word of caution there too. Over hydration may not be common, but it can cause a condition known as hyponatremia. In this condition, there is dilution of sodium in the bloodstream and the symptoms include nausea, headache, disorientation, and even swelling. Hyponatremia shouldn’t be taken lightly, as it could even prove to be fatal. Other extreme symptoms include organ damage, epileptic fit or stroke.
Even 8 Glasses a Day May Be Excess Amount of Water
You are already taking a lot of water from your foods. The 8-glass norm can be flexible considering that up to 30 percent of daily water requirement may be fulfilled from your diet. There are many factors that could affect the volume of water you need to take every day. This includes your age, gender, health status, and the climate. The variations could be in the following form:
- Gender – Typically, an average man will take more water per day than an average woman. The reason lies in the water content of their bodies. The volume of water in the body of an adult man can be up to 65 percent. An adult woman usually doesn’t have more than 60 percent water in her body. The difference lies in the higher muscle content in men compared to the relatively higher fat content in women.
- Lifestyle – If you lead an active lifestyle, your body will need more water to make up for the lost water consumed and excreted by the body.
- Food – If your food contains higher percentage of proteins and sugar, again you need to take more water so that your blood can easily absorb these nutrients. This is why most sweet beverages cause dehydration and increase thirst.
- Climate – This is relatively easier to understand. We need to drink more water during the summer when our body is regularly perspiring. The water helps us keep cool. So we need to drink more water than in the winter to maintain body hydration.
- Altitude – Even the altitude of the place you live in is going to affect how much water you should drink every day. Because of low pressure in high places the moisture percentage in the air is too low. As your body loses more and more water due to evaporation, you have to drink more water to maintain the balance.
- Health Status – If you have poor health, your body is producing more toxins. You will have to drink more water to eliminate those toxins from the body.
How to Determine if your Body is Adequately Hydrated?
Use the following methods to determine if your body is adequately hydrated or not:
- Look at the color and volume of your urine. If you are hydrated, it will be clear and there will be plenty of it.
- If you have dry lips when you wake up in the morning, it is a sign that you need to increase your water intake.
How to Remain Hydrated?
- Rather than gulping down lots of water, it is recommended to sip it. When you drink too much water, your body will eliminate it all through urination.
- Drink low-sugar beverages. 5 g per 8 oz should be the maximum tolerable sugar in a drink.
- Additional Health Benefits of Proper Hydration
An adequately hydrated body means better overall health. It helps improve the health of your skin and organs. While you will start noticing lighter, softer and cleaner skin, drinking the right amount of water could also prevent you from overeating by making you feel filled.