It is just logical that we want to keep our bodies hydrated when they are made up of three quarters of water. Our organs cannot function without water since all the body processes depend on it. That is why hydration is so important for us.
Water is essential. It helps cells communicate, regulate the temperature, humidify the air we breathe, lubricate the joints and transport nutrients.
So how much water do we need to drink?
Even if we do not feel it, we can easily lose up to 3% of it on a normal day. This is a passive and effortless process since we lose it through sweat, breathing and metabolism. On the contrary, replacing the water is rather an active and more complex process.
Not only do we need to remind ourselves to drink water, but also gauge how much our body needs. Some experts recommend to drink 2 litters of water a day, whereas others recommend to drink regularly during the day. The former one is generic but the latter one is vague. The 2-litter rule does not discriminate sex, physical activity level, age or environmental aspects, such as the temperature. All these elements determine how much hydration we need on a daily basis.
A more accurate, but non-validated method, is the use of hydration calculators. These tools use data such as your age, gender, height, weight and activity level to estimate the water intake needed. Find yours here:
What happens when you are dehydrated?
Any Lack of water in our body can have a detrimental impact in our health and performance. Mild dehydrations can make us feel a bit moody, lose attention or concentration, affect our memory and reduce our motor coordination. A moderate dehydration can be more aggressive to our body, making us feel very fatigued, dizzy or lethargic. A severe dehydration can kill us in a matter of days.
But let’s not be so dramatic. Recovering the water we imperceptibly lose on a normal day not only ensures a well-being, but also impacts our ability to complete simple everyday tasks.
How to spot a lack of hydration?
Here are some quick ways for you to know when is time to drink water:
- Your lips are dry
- You feel you have a bad breath
- Your eyes are red
- Your throat feels dry or irritated
- You start to pass saliva more than usual