Many of the basic bodily functions we take for granted on a daily basis rely on water… so with out it your body will SHUT DOWN. Anyone who has ever suffered from a bout with dehydration can attest to that!
We had an ‘issue’ with dehydration one hot Summer afternoon in 2011 while digging out the area for what would eventually become a recessed fire pit. Despite drinking a lot of water before and during the afternoon’s outdoor activity the Summer heat in South Carolina coupled with the tremendous amount of sweating resulted in the onset of heat exhaustion and dehydration.
What did it feel like? In a word, HORRIBLE. Lightheaded, dizzy, exhausted, shaky, weak, headache, nausea, and a few other symptoms. It took three days of steadily drinking liquids (electrolyte-rich sports drinks and plenty of water) in small amounts before all the ill effects of dehydration went away.
How much water does a person really need?
As a basic rule of thumb most average-sized people leading average lives (i.e. not being stupid and digging a pit in the middle of Summer in Sough Carolina!) require an estimated 64 ounces of water a day. That may sound like a lot of fluids to drink in a single day, but in actuality some of that amount we take in through the foods we consume and in other beverages like coffee, tea, milk, juices, etc.
Obviously smaller framed folks could require a bit less water on a daily basis and larger framed folks could require a bit more water on a daily basis. Additionally, other factors such as temperature, personal health conditions, and activity level change a person’s daily water requirement.
What does water do for the body?
According to the Mayo Clinic web site, the human body contains approximately 60 percent (by weight) water… so it definitely behooves us to keep our water content correct!
- Regulates body temperature
- Moistens key areas of the body such as the nose, ears, mouth and throat
- Lubricates joints to make movement easier
- Aids in keeping bodily organs and tissue functioning properly
- Helps keep the kidney functioning correctly by flushing out toxins
- Dissolves mineral and nutrients to make them usable by the body
- Helps in the transport of oxygen and nutrients to all areas of the body
With all of the useful benefits that water offers us it makes total sense that the human body WILL SHUT DOWN if it does not stay properly hydrated.
Does chugging water or sports drinks help?
Unfortunately, NO. The human body processes (passes through and excretes) liquids at a faster rate than it can absorb them for actual use so continuously sipping liquids tends to work much more better and efficiently than taking huge gulps every once in a while.
The ‘frequent sipping’ method should also help to keep you from having to use the bathroom as often, too! 😉
Ways to keep water handy
Obviously the answer of ‘bottled water’ springs to mind… but what if you, like more and more people each day, dislike the idea of having to throw away (or better yet recycle! Please!) plastic bottles all the time, then products such as the Austin Springs 18-ounce Drinking Water Bottle may work quite well for you.
Simply fill a batch of the bottles (they come in a pack of six) with fresh, clean drinking water and refill as needed. Better for the environment and definitely better on your wallet/purse in the long run!