Monday, August 30, 2010

Dehydration, Do you drink enough water?

We all know that we need to drink enough water or water based drinks like Crystal Light and that it helps vital organs, digestive system, muscle tissue and helps our body dissolve nutrients and get rid of toxins. But do we really drink enough? You can find calculators online based on body weight but some people claim they get too full or feel sick when they drink as much water as it says for them to drink. Others drink more then it says and feel bad if they don't drink more.  Personally I carry around a 32 ounce water bottle and I usually drink 3 of those a day, sometimes more. I even carry an extra water bottle and drink mix packets in my car in case I need them.
My favorite water bottle with Sugar Free Cran-Grape.

The extra water bottle and drink packets in my car.
Well.... the past week or so I have been busier then normal it seems and I am so use to drinking a lot but I guess I didn't even think about it. It was hotter today and I started feeling like I was getting a headache, I was really thirsty and I felt really hungry. Then my legs started feeling a bit crampy..... When I put it all together and I knew those were some of the signs of deyhdration.... I kinda thought really? me??? How could I be dehydrated when I drink so much??? Then I thought about how I have been thirsty but I would be busy and just keep working and not go get a drink until I was really really thirsty. I looked over at my water bottle and it was empty and I realized I had not filled it up since the gym. Then I realized that filling it up before the gym was the first time I had filled it up all day..... So I went and filled it up and I have sucked down 32 ounces of sugar free cran grape and still thirsty so I am working on my second one now. I did have two 24 ounce cups full of Diet Sunkist with dinner, but soda doesn't seem to help hydrate me as well. The Diet Sunkist was good though. :)

It's kind of ironic that I get dehydrated after telling 3 or 4 people in the past week to make sure they are drinking enough water..... Perhaps I needed to listen to my own advice! When I was talking to my Mom about it she brought up drinking too much water and how she felt sick. Well, it is possible to drink too much water and get water intoxication and I guess it can be tricky to find the balance but apparently some people sweat more salt then others and if someone does not have enough sodium in their diet then they can't properly absorb the water and are more at risk for the water intoxication. So like if someone doesn't eat much sodium but they sweat a lot of sodium then it can be harder for them to drink more water. But if you have too much sodium in your diet then you can retain water.

So I guess you just kinda of have to look at how much sodium you normally get from food and other drinks and then see if your sweat is salty or not. I know someone who leaves white salt stains behind from their sweat. Come to think of it that person craves salty foods, maybe it's because they lose so much in their sweat and they tend to sweat a lot too. My sweat is not like that and I don't crave salt at all, apparently this is like everything else and everyone is different to a certain degree. A few weeks ago I was drinking some Powerade Zero's and I was very thirsty and they were cold and good and I chugged 4 of them in one evening. They are 32 ounces each and the next day I woke up 5 lbs. heavier! I lost all that water weight the next day, but I felt like I was in the ladies room way too much! lol. After that I checked the bottles again and while they did not have any calories or carbs, they did have 800 mg of sodium per bottle! and I had 4 of them..... One a day by it's self when I go to the gym would probably not be bad at all, but I won't ever have 4 of those in one day again. We do need some salt in our systems but I don't think I need an extra 3200 mg worth. lol

The more active you are and the hotter it is the more water you need. I am pretty active and it was hot today so I guess it makes sense. I have read that you should make sure to stay hydrated before exercising, during exercise and after exercise and that when you are exercising your body is losing a lot of water. I didn't drink much before and not as much as usual during and not much after either. The harder you are working, the more you sweat and the longer you workout, the more water you are losing. I need to remember to drink more before the gym and more after. I have always heard that you need to drink something even before you are thirsty, because by the time you feel thirsty then you are already starting to get dehydrated. Also you can feel hungry when you are really thirsty and so if you feel hungry you should drink something and then see if you are still really hungry or not. This can also help with weight loss because if you are not truly hungry then you shouldn't be eating, unless maybe your work schedule requires it or you won't get any food at all or you are sick and don't want to eat, but if that is the case you probably need to eat at least a little bit of food. But in most cases it is not a good idea to eat unless you are hungry.

Anyway I find it easier to drink more water if I use a Crystal Light type drink mix, there are a lot of varieties out there. Here is just the selection I have at home, the Ocean Spray Cran Grape is my favorite. Some people have trouble with artifical sweeteners but the drink mixes I use have not bothered me at all. There is one kind that bothers me, but it isn't in the drink mixes I use. I don't drink a lot of soda but I will drink Sprite Zero or Diet Sunkist or sometimes Diet Root Beer or a Diet Pepsi once in awhile.

 If you have trouble remembering to drink your water you might set reminders in your phone or your calendar at work and a google calendar at home. Just set it as a reoccurring event with a reminder "Drink Water" a few times a day that you might not think about drinking like between meals. The reminders can get annoying, but they work. :)  I knew a lady who would put rubber bands on her water bottle, one for each bottle of water she wanted to drink. When she finished the bottle she would remove a rubber band. It helped her not to lose count. I use to use the calendar reminders but stopped a few years ago, maybe I need to re-think that!

Did I mention that drinking enough water helps with weight loss??? As does getting enough sleep, which I am lacking in and have not been to bed yet. I am definitely not a good example to follow on sleeping habbits. >_>

1 comment:

  1. I hate water!!!Know I need it,though.
    Can I use the Crystal Light??Will I still lose weight??