We all know that when it is hot outside, our chances of becoming dehydrated significantly increase. However, there are many other causes of dehydration other than just warm climate temperatures. Some of the following might surprise you. So be on the lookout for the hidden factors that can contribute to dehydration:
The dry air pulls moisture from your lungs as you breathe, similar to desert temperatures. The relative humidity of air-conditioned air is lower, making it dryer. As much as it feels good to crank up the AC in the office, make sure you’re doing something to combat the effect of the indoor tundra your co-workers hate you for.
Low air pressure in airplanes combined with air conditioning during flight is a serious combination for dehydration. So if you order that rum and coke on a long flight, make sure you have your water bottle close at hand.
Antihistamines, Decongestants and Prescription Medications:
We know that the fall can stir up airborne allergies. Plus those nasty colds that come with the changing temperatures may send you searching the aisles of the drugstore for some cough medicine. Antihistamines and decongestants tend to dehydrate the cells and can make us feel drowsy. If allergies and/or a bug are keeping you up at night, you’d be wise to listen to your mom and have that extra bowl of chicken soup. The broth liquid will do you good! Oh and remember prescribed medications can also be dehydrating because many act as diuretics or have dehydration as a side effect.
You are really looking forward to your snowboard trip. You’ve trained hard in the gym, and you’re a lean, mean fighting machine. Well, you might go a little easier on yourself once you hear this. When you’re at altitude, your heart rate automatically increases, and your breathing increases to cope with the decreased oxygen levels. No matter how hard you train at sea level, once you get up to altitude, your body will need time to adjust. So while you’re working a little harder than expected to ride your toeside edge, don’t worry. But do make sure hydrate when you’re in the lodge. Increased physical demand means increased hydration needs.
Sometimes showing up in the form of “Joe,” “Matcha,” “English Breakfast,” “Soda,” or the almighty “Macchiato,” caffeine provides us with one of those love/hate relationships. That beloved kickstart in the morning can be a favorite part of the day. But the slight headache after the second or third cup while at the office is not so nice. Yes, we all know that caffeine is a diuretic and causes us to lose fluids. So if you like to indulge, then do your kidneys a favor and increase your water intake. Ideally 8 ounces for every 4 ounces of caffeinated beverage you consume.
Hate to tell you, but your favorite concoction does have a dehydrating effect on the body. So if you’re looking to improve the look of your skin, stave off mental dullness and have better overall energy, you might want to consider drinking 8 ounces of hydrating liquid for every alcoholic drink you consume. And no the cranberry juice you add to your vodka does not count as a hydrating liquid. Think water, think broths, and of course we want you to think Vitalyte. But seriously, get hydrated after a hard night out. Alcohol pulls water from the tissues and directly affects the stomach, liver, and brain. And we want you to keep that grey matter functioning on all twelve cylinders!
When you eliminate carbs from your diet, you tend to lose weight. Well, here’s what really happens. Carbs and fluids are stored in your cell. So when you take out the carbs, you tend to lose water as well. Plus often times on low-carb diets people decrease their intake of fruit, which offers a good source of liquid. We’re sorry to break it to you, but if you are following a low-carb diet, you will want to increase your liquid intake surely. While a few pounds might go back on the scale, it’s just water, and that is a good thing!
It’s great for lowering blood pressure, reducing stress, and combating your risk of diseases such as diabetes. But before you hit the trail, court or studio, make sure you bone up on H20. Not only does the sweat you’re about to have account for water loss, but so does the engine rev you’re about to give your body. The increased demand on your muscles, heart, lungs, and cells all call for fluid, fluid, fluid. Oh and don’t be so quick to grab a green juice or freshly squeezed fruit juice to help you cool down post-workout. The high potassium and high sugar content don’t create the isotonic environment your cells need for fluid to be rapidly absorbed. We suggest spring water, distilled water with electrolytes added, or ideally Vitalyte.