Thursday, 28 May 2015

Why dehydration is bad for your body

Being dehydrated can take a toll on your body and even your mind. It doesn't take much to become dehydrated. Lose just 1.5% of the water in your body (the human body is usually about 60% H2O), and you’ve reached the tipping point of mild dehydration. It can be brought on by many things—and it can do much more to your body than just make you feel thirsty. Dehydration also brings on health effects ranging from fatigue and smelly breath to more dangerous consequences like distracted driving.


Why dehydration is bad for your body


It gives you bad breath

It’s easy to forget to drink water during a busy workday, but at the end of the day you may find people standing unusually far from you when you open your mouth.
Saliva has important antibacterial properties. When dehydrated, the decreased saliva in the mouth allows bacteria to thrive, resulting in bad breath. So drink up for your own sake, and for those around you as well.

It wrecks your workout

Even being slightly dehydrated affects your ability to put effort into your workout. A 2% dehydration level in your body causes a 10% decrease in athletic performance and the more dehydrated you become, the worse performance gets.

It dries your skin out

Keeping skin healthy and glowing requires drinking enough water. Depending on your lifestyle you may need to adjust your water intake. If you work out every day or are a caffeine fiend, for instance, then you’ll need to drink more, because workouts make you sweat and caffeine is a diuretic, which can dehydrate you. For smooth, moisturized skin, you should keep showers short (less than five minutes) and using only lukewarm or cold (I take cold showers) water as hot water can dry your skin out even more.

It makes you tired

A mid-afternoon slump may have more to do with hydration than you think. When you’re dehydrated your blood pressure drops, heart rate increases, blood flow to the brain slows and, as a result, you become tired. A lack of water to muscles also makes physical tasks feel more difficult and tiring.

It sours your mood

Feeling cranky? Drink a glass of water and your mood may change, cause dehydration can cause irritability, headaches, loss of focus.

It can give you the chills

That's right! Dehydration can bring on chills. That is because your body starts to limit blood flow to the skin. In addition, water holds heat, so if you become hydrated it can be more difficult to regulate your body temperature, which can make you become chilled faster, even when you’re not in a cold environment.

It can cause muscle cramps

A lack of water causes less blood circulation, which can make muscles cramp up. The body will protect its vital organs, so it shifts fluid away from muscles and anything that’s not vital. Muscle cramps can be extremely painful, making muscles feel harder than normal to the touch. Changes in sodium and potassium through sweat loss can also contribute to cramping.

It makes you feel dizzy

Along with muscles, your brain also gets less blood circulation when you’re low on water, which can make you dizzy. Also, dehydration may affect your ability to take on mental tasks.

It can give you a headache

Dehydration can cause headaches in a couple of different ways. Lack of water affects your body’s serotonin levels, which can give you headaches. In addition, small blood vessels in the brain respond quickly to hydration levels (which is also behind hangover headaches), leading to dull aches and even full-blown migraines. Try downing a glass or two of water the next time you have a headache and you may discover it disappears. You could also eat fruit, which contains a high percentage of water.

It constipates you

Your body needs water to keep things moving through your colon. When you’re not getting enough H2O, your body compensates by withdrawing more fluid from stool, making it harder and more difficult to pass. That said, it’s worth noting that drinking more water when you’re already properly hydrated won’t necessarily relieve constipation caused by other factors, like the medications you’re taking, medical conditions, or a lack of fiber in your diet.


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