What Is Dehydration?
The human body is made of 75% water that means water is the most important element for the human body for it to function properly. Dehydration occurs when the water intake is less than the water loss from the body in various forms. Dehydration is a condition of a body in which a body lacks water or fluid content needed for it to function properly. The severity of dehydration depends upon the amount of the fluid loss.
What Are The Symptoms Of Dehydration?
Certain symptoms of dehydration are:
- Feeling extremely thirsty: One of the most prominent sign of dehydration is Increase in thirst.
- Dryness in the mouth. Mouth feels dry and sticky in the case of dehydration.
- The decrease in urination: Amount and frequency of urination decrease significantly.
- Changed colour of urine: The colour of Urine becomes dark in the case of dehydration.
- Feeling exhausted all the time.
- Feeling dizzy and confused.
- A headache: Brain is enclosed in a fluid sac. In the case of dehydration, fluid tends to decrease which results in a headache.
- Extremely dry skin: Due to dehydration, moisture is lost from the skin, thus resulting in dryness and reduced elasticity of the skin.
- Increased heart rate.
- Low Blood-pressure.
- Sunken eyes.
- Light headedness.
- Muscle cramping: Due to loss of water, electrolytes like sodium and potassium are also lost from the body that causes muscle cramping.
In some serious cases, patients might get unconscious as well.
What Are The Causes Of Dehydration?
There are several causes of dehydration, such as:
- Diarrhoea: Diarrhoea is one of the most common reasons for the fluid loss from the body. A high amount of water is lost from the body every time faeces are discharged from the bowel which is quite frequent in diarrhoea.
- Excessive sweating: When the temperature of the body is high due to exercise, fever or may be due to the weather conditions, the body tries to cool it with the help of sweat formation. Thus, a lot of fluid is lost in this process causing dehydration.
- Vomiting: Significant amount of water is lost through vomiting, which is difficult to replace because of the feeling of nausea at that time.
- Diabetes: People suffering from diabetes tend to urinate more, which results in dehydration.
- Alcohol consumption: Alcohol consumption can lead to decrease in production of antidiuretic hormones, which result in an increase of urination ultimately causing dehydration.
What Are The Things One Should Do To Manage Dehydration?
- Always carry a water bottle when you are going outdoors.
- Keep consuming water before, during and after exercise.
- In summers, keep drinking lemonade.
- Consume watery fruits like watermelon.
- Try to keep your diabetes in control.
- Replace your carbonated drinks with lemonade or plain water.
- Consult a doctor in case of extreme dehydration.
What Are The Things One Should Avoid To Manage Dehydration?
- Do not consume alcohol.
- Do not consume caffeinated drinks.
- Do not take protein rich diet.
- Do not exert yourself when you feel dehydrated.
- Do not avoid the initial symptoms of dehydration.
What Are The Best Foods For Dehydration?
Other than water, foods that can keep the body hydrated are:
Fluid rich fruits: There are various fruits that are good for hydration of a body. Few such fruits are:
- Watermelon: Watermelon is one of the best hydrating fruit as it contains 92% water. Also, watermelon has nutrients like lycopene, vitamin C and beta carotene.
- Strawberries: Tasty fruit like strawberry also has 92% water content.
- Other few watery fruits that can be consumed in dehydration are peaches, oranges, grapefruit, cranberry, pineapple, cantaloupe, apple, apricots and cherries.
- Fluid rich vegetables: Certain vegetables with a high amount of water content are:
- Celery: Celery contains 96% of water content making it a good food to consume when dehydrated. Celery has lots of nutrients as well like sodium, magnesium, potassium and calcium.
- Cucumber: Even cucumber has 96% of water content so just munching it can help a lot in hydration.
- Certain other vegetables like Lettuce, tomatoes, cabbage, cauliflower, eggplant and spinach also helps in combating dehydration.
- Popsicles: Consuming popsicles is the most fun way of combating dehydration.
- Yoghurt: Yoghurt is a very good hydrating food because it has water as well as electrolytes such as sodium and potassium that instantly boost up the energy level.
What Are The Worst Foods For Dehydration?
Foods that can worsen dehydration are:
- Protein rich diet: When consuming protein rich foods like ham and bacon, the body uses a high amount of water to metabolise the nitrogen formed by protein, thus resulting in dehydration.
- Caffeine containing beverages: Caffeinated drinks like coffee and caffeinated tea are diuretic in nature that results in frequent urination ultimately leading to dehydration.
- Alcohol containing beverages: All the alcohol containing beverages including beer and wine are also diuretic in nature hence leading to dehydration.
- Fried foods: Consuming fried food can cause dehydration as it consists of high amount of hidden salt.
- Sugar containing drinks: Sugary drinks cause acidity in the body that can weaken the enzyme function and decreases the water storage capacity of the body.
What Are The Medicines For Dehydration?
What Are The Tips To Manage Dehydration?
- Set alarms for drinking water regularly.
- Always keep a water tumbler handy.
- Consult a good doctor in case of extreme dehydration.