Tuesday 19 July 2016
With soaring temperatures across the UK, it is even more important to stay hydrated as you are at the greatest risk of dehydration when you get too hot. During this hot spell we are likely to lose more fluid through excess sweating. Feeling thirsty is one of the ways your body is telling you that you need more water, another way by telling if you are dehydrated is the colour of your urine, the darker in colour the more dehydrated you are, though certain medications can also affect the colour. Other symptoms of dehydration include a dry mouth, muscle tiredness and a headache.
Although all fluids contain water, some contain vitamins and minerals to provide extra energy, there is the temptation to sit in the pub garden and enjoy a cool beer or glass of wine. However, alcohol is a diuretic, which will result in you urinating more and becoming more dehydrated, the advice is to balance the alcohol consumption with non-alcoholic fluids, ideally water.
If you are undertaking exercise, especially during this hot spell it is important to be hydrated beforehand to avoid getting cramp, water is the best fluid if you are undertaking light exercise, if high intensity you may want to consider a sports drink. Whilst you are exercising it is important to sip water every 20 minutes and then to continue to stay hydrated when you have finished.
Water makes up about 60% of our bodyweight, helps to regulate our temperature, used for carrying nutrients and waste products between major organs and acts as a lubricant for our joints. It is recommended that men consume on average 2.5 litres of water a day and women 2 litres, this can be consumed through fluids and food.