It's the time of year when we not only focus on eating healthy, but also on staying properly hydrated.
The heat can cause discomforting symptoms if regular and adequate fluids are not consumed.
The body's initial responses to dehydration are thirst and decreased urine output. The urine will become concentrated and more yellow in color.
As the level of water loss increases, more symptoms can become apparent. The following are further signs and symptoms of dehydration:
- Dry mouth
- Eyes stop making tears
- Sweating may stop
- Muscle cramps
- Nausea and vomiting
- Light-headed (when standing)
- Decreased urine output
- Have fluid source readily available – Plan ahead and make sure you drink enough water throughout the day and night to replenish fluids lost during activities. That means drinking when you are thirsty and keeping your urine color light yellow like lemonade and not dark like apple juice.
- Water will do the trick – For most people water will be sufficient enough to keep you properly hydrated. If you are working really hard, you might need to replace calories that are lost due to perspiration. A soda or sports drink can help with fluid and calorie replacement.
- Be careful when drinking alcohol - If you choose to drink alcohol, do so in moderation. A good strategy is to alternate alcoholic beverages with water. You can only count on about 75% of an alcoholic beverage ending up in the body as fluid. 4.
- Listen to your body – When the temperatures and activity levels rise it’s even more important to listen to your body and take breaks if you start to feel light-headed, feel overheated or if you develop a headache. These are warning signs that something is not right. Don’t ignore them!
- Don’t take in too much fluid – It might sound a little strange but be careful of drinking too much fluid. This can lead to the opposite of dehydration – over-hydration.