Even mild dehydration can affect our vascular function almost as much as smoking one cigarette, says the European Journal of Nutrition, and it’s thought that dehydration could even play a role in the risk of cardiovascular disease.
We only start to feel thirsty when we’re at 2% dehydration, yet impairment from mild dehydration begins even earlier than this. It’s important to keep topped up with fluids to ensure you don’t reach this level
It’s thought that by taking on board just 1-3 more glasses of tap water each day could help with weight control. Nutrients are better transported around the body when we’re hydrated, and by drinking we get a feeling of fullness that means we tend not to eat so much, hence why the weight is kept down.
Water regulates body temperature and keeps joints well oiled, all in all, it’s pretty good stuff.
The effects of a lack of hydration include dizziness, muscle cramps and tiredness so it’s important to check that you’re taking on enough fluids – and even more so when you’re exercising.
The way to check your hydration levels is to check the colour of your urine. If it’s colourless or light yellow, you are ok. If it’s dark yellow or amber, then you’re dehydrated.
It’s easy to forget to drink, so try carry a bottle of water with you at all times, or top up with fruit teas, or decaf hot drinks. Also, food contains water, so fruit and veg are your best bet for staying both hydrated and healthy.
I don;t think the water we drink in tea and coffee counts does it? Because it is dehydrating, so actually makes us need to drink more water. Just something I heard years ago, but not sure if it's true or not. Does anyone know?
This is great technical information that I had never heard before about drinking water. I already drink plenty, but it's great to hear I am doing myself so much good!
I drink water first thing in the morning and before every meal, plus what I have in tea and coffee. That's the easiest way to do it.