Forgetting to consume water sounds nearly as foolish as failing to inhale, yet there’s a dehydration epidemic, according to a 2015 study. Researchers discovered that more than half of the 4,000 children examined weren’t consuming enough water, with 25 percent stating that they didn’t drink any water throughout the day. And this isn’t solely a problem for children: Adults may be even worse at meeting the daily recommendation for water intake. Up to 75 percent of the population could be consistently dehydrated…oh dear.
Being slightly deficient in water won’t cause harm, but it can diminish muscle strength, as well as your aerobic and anaerobic abilities, states Corinne Dobbas, M.D., R.D. In your everyday life, dehydration can lead to poor cognitive performance, headaches, and sluggishness, she explains.
So how do you determine if you’re consuming enough H2O? To start, your urine should be light yellow or very transparent, says Dr. Dobbas. (However, if you aren’t drinking a large amount of water and may be feeling dehydrated but your urine is clear when you check the toilet bowl, it might indicate a kidney issue or diabetes, according to the Cleveland Clinic.)
Aside from rushing to the bathroom, there are several less obvious indications that your body needs a water refill that don’t involve checking before you flush. Here, five of the major signs of dehydration to watch out for, apart from the color of your urine.
Dehydration Sign #1: You’re Hungry
When your body craves a drink, it isn’t particular about the source of that water and will gladly accept nourishment as well as a glass of plain water. That’s why many individuals assume they’re hungry when they begin to feel weak and fatigued, explains Dr. Dobbas. However, it’s more challenging to hydrate through food, which is why you might want to attempt drinking a glass of water before eating to see if that satisfies your “hunger,” she advises. (If it doesn’t, try one of these satisfying snacks with ample protein.)
Dehydration Sign #2: Your Breath Stinks
When there isn’t enough water in your system, your salivary glands can’t perform their function and therefore generate less saliva.
Less saliva implies a greater amount of bacteria in your oral cavity because saliva is accountable for eliminating bacteria and residual food particles. The surplus of bacteria taking residence leads to unpleasant breath, as well as an increased vulnerability to oral health complications.
Dehydration Sign #3: You’re Irritable
A negative mood may begin with your hydration levels, in accordance with a study published in the Journal of Nutrition. Researchers discovered that young women who were only one percent dehydrated reported experiencing more fury, despair, irritation, and agitation compared to women who consumed sufficient water during a laboratory examination.
Dehydration Sign #4: You’re a Bit Hazy
That mid-afternoon mental exhaustion may be your body pleading for hydration, according to a study in the British Journal of Nutrition. Investigators found that individuals who were slightly dehydrated during the experiment performed worse on cognitive tasks and reported feelings of desiring to surrender and an incapacity to reach decisions.
Dehydration Sign #5: You Have a Throbbing Headache
That same study which discovered that dehydration heightened irritability in women also observed an escalation in headaches among the same participants. The researchers additionally noted that diminishing water levels could reduce the amount of fluid enveloping the brain in the cranium, consequently providing less cushioning and defense against even slight jolts and motion. (BRB, guzzling water at the contemplation of that.)
Thanks for your response!