Did you know that the average adult consists of about 50-60% water? Water is an essential nutrient for all living things (that includes us!) and has many functions in the body. It acts as a lubricant for your joints and eyes and is the main component of saliva. Water also helps get rid of waste and helps regulate body temperature.
Hydration is the process of replacing water in the body. There are many ways to accomplish this, but here are just a few ideas:
- Drink water (Not a fan of plain water? Check out these tasty infused waters!)
- Eat food with a high water content (i.e. fruits and vegetables)
- Drink other fluids (milk, seltzer, tea, coffee…)
- Intravenous (IV) line
When your body doesn’t have enough water to function optimally, it becomes dehydrated.
Your body loses water all the time. When you go to the bathroom, from sweat, and also evaporation from your skin. If you don’t consume enough fluids, you will become dehydrated.
Signs of dehydration include:
- Muscle cramps
- Rapid pulse
Can dehydration be measured? One way that you can keep an eye on your hydration levels is by measuring the amount of water lost during exercise. Weighing yourself before and after exercise can be a useful tool in estimating your hydration status.