How to Prevent Dehydration
Every day we strive to take lots of liquids to prevent dehydration, not knowing that water alone isn’t the best way to stay hydrated. While it’s our core body fuel, we also need a balance of essential mineral salts, commonly known as electrolytes, to keep our processes optimised.
Fluids and minerals loss affects human performance in several ways. It’s the cause of fatigue, mood swings, and lack of concentration. Even the mildest form of it can affect your normal functions. As such, it’s crucial to keep a proper balance by doing electrolyte replacement adequately.
Why isn’t Water Enough To Prevent Dehydration?
For mild desiccation, Adam’s ale should be enough to top up your body moisture. But it will only be effective if you’ve been keeping your hydration status in check with rehydration drinks.
In its plain form, it lacks essential mineral salts such as sodium, magnesium, chloride, potassium, calcium, and many others. When dehydrated, you need a new flash of mineral salts to top up the losses and boost fluid retention capabilities. Taking oral rehydration solutions is the most effective way to prevent dehydration.
Although very rare, taking too much of this naturally occurring liquid can cause harm, especially in those who exercise for long hours. That’s because it causes the kidney to work hard to excrete the surplus through urine, which flushes a lot of sodium with it. With the reduced levels of this critical electrolyte, imbalance chips in, resulting in hyponatremia.
While taking too much of this body fuel might not pose serious harm to your body, there are better ways to stay hydrated.
How to Prevent Dehydration
When you lose more fluids than you’re taking in, dehydration is the result. Some of the causes include vomiting, diarrhoea, excessive alcohol consumption, excessive sweating, failure to drink enough liquids, among others. It can be dangerous in young children and older people.
To stay hydrated at all times, you need a proper salts and fluids balance. The following are more effective ways to prevent dehydration other than just drinking plain water.
These are tablets containing proper proportions of the essential minerals such as sodium and calcium needed to stay hydrated. Unlike sports drinks, they do not have sugars and carbs hence very effective in electrolyte replacement.
These tabs are taken with water and boost your body’s retention capacity, thus highly effective in reversing the loss of fluids.
Oral rehydration solutions
Like the hydration tabs, the ORS are ready solutions with proper amounts of necessary electrolytes to keep you hydrated. They can also be in the form of powder in sachets, where you’ll have to dissolve in water to create the hydration drink.
ORS is highly effective and ideal when dehydrated from vomiting, diarrhoea, a hangover, or food poisoning. Generally, make it a habit to drink this rehydration solution even when not faced with severe loss of fluids and electrolytes.
Consume mineral-rich foods
Naturally occurring foods that are rich in mineral salts are also ideal for keeping the body hydrated. These include coconut water, watermelon juice, peanuts, spinach, almonds, broccoli, and fruits. Essentially, avoid processed foods and sports drinks after experiencing a hangover, food poisoning, or illness. These contain too much sugar and can spike stomach upsets resulting in vomiting or diarrhoea.
The crucial point to take is that you shouldn’t stop drinking water or take less, nor should you swap it for rehydration drinks. But if you intend to remain optimally hydrated, it’s crucial to adopt a slow and steady rhythm to consumption. Also, couple it with electrolyte drinks and mineral-rich foods to keep a proper balance of moisture and salts in your body.