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Tags: dehydration | sweat | water | drink | fluid

How Much Water Do You Need to Drink in a Day to Avoid Dehydration?

Monday, 10 February 2014 01:15 AM EST

Water is an essential component of our body. About 60 percent of our body weight is made of water and other fluids. Fluids such as bile juices, blood, lymph, cerebrospinal fluids, digestive juices, sweat, saliva, etc. are very crucial for proper functioning of the body. We lose water through sweating, respiration, movements, urination, and defecation. Water and electrolytes together play an important role in various body systems.
Dehydration is a condition associated with water and electrolyte loss in our body due to increased sweating. Dehydration affects normal functioning of the body as the fluid available is not sufficient to carry nutrients to the cells. Dehydration is characterized by thirst and dry throat in the beginning. If water or other fluids are not taken, dehydration causes leg cramps, headache, fatigue, and scanty urine. Chronic dehydration is also linked with kidney stones and constipation. While sweating, our body loses sodium, potassium, and chlorides along with water in dehydration.
Dehydration is very common among children and people who work while being exposed to the sun in hot environment. They tend to sweat more and need to drink a lot of fluids. Drinking sufficient amount of water and other fluids helps their body to maintain balance for what they lose through sweating.
The need of water differs for different people in different situations. There is no one answer to the question, how much of water a person should drink in a day. The quantity of drinking water depends on a lot of factors.
It is very important to know one’s body needs to learn about the quantity of fluids necessary for drinking. Water and fluids like milk, juices, soups, buttermilk, etc. should replenish the water loss through body activities and hot environments. Cold drinks and alcoholic drinks are not suitable for the long term as they contain a lot of synthetics that prove harmful when taken in large quantities. These drinks should not replace water and natural fluids.
Sweat loss can make you deficient in salt as well. The causes of dehydration could be as varied as working under hot conditions to being affected by certain infections such as diarrhea. People having a heat stroke can also get dehydrated soon. Those doing exercises or heavy physical work need to drink extra fluids for compensating the heat produced. Some illnesses and conditions like pregnancy and lactation also affect the quantity of fluids one needs. Hot and humid environments put us at great risk of dehydration and salt depletion through sweating. Some medical illnesses like fever, vomiting, and diarrhea require us to drink more fluids. In fever, sweating is a natural phenomenon to lose the heat.
The simplest way to test your dehydration level is to check your urine quantity and color. If one secretes about one and a half quarts of light yellow-colored urine then the hydration levels are fine.

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Water is a significant part of our diet. The fluids in our body are really essential for our health. We need to replenish the water and salt lost in sweating with liquids to avoid dehydration. In different conditions, our body requires water in different quantities.
Monday, 10 February 2014 01:15 AM
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