Monday, 10 June 2013


                             Water & Hydration


Beside being thirsty and reaching for a glass of water to quench our thirst, water has so many important functions in our bodies. Of all the nutrients essential in the chemistry and functioning of living forms, it is the most important. Not surprised I'm sure.

Here are the  functions of water in the body:

1. Moistens tissues such as those in the mouth, eyes and nose.
2. It protects the bodys organs and tissues.
3. Essential for proper balance between water & electrolytes. 
4. Water is the main constituent of blood, the major transportation mechanism in the body for oxygen, nutrients, & hormones.
5. Water is also important for proper functioning of our senses.
6. Lubricates joints.
7. Helps disolve mineral and other nutrients to make them accessible to the body.
8. For regulating body temperature-Of great importance to the active person. Water is the main constituent of sweat, and through it's evaporation from the surface of the skin it can help dissipate excess body heat. Out of all the nutrients, water is the most important to the physically active person.

We all know when the hotter weather comes we tend to reach for a drink  of  water a bit more, but the importance or water is everyday and all seasons. How much do we need? 
Here is a chart that shows us for the average day what each of us should be consuming,  however depending on exercise and the duration of exercise plus environmental conditions this will increase. This means for you active people and you athletes, keeping well hydrated is extremely important. 

Heat exhaustion is a common heat illness during exercise. Dehydration is  the main risk factor for this. This was the case for me during my first 10k race. Besides not knowing much about nutrition then and the importance of water and hydration, the heat was my other enemy. I was at the last kilometre of my race and I couldn't see straight, started wobbling then collapsed. Then all I knew, I was in an ambulance on the way to the hospital. Once I was there the nurses were cutting of my top and I was loaded with ice packs to bring my high body temp down. Somehow I couldn't talk or even open my eyes. After some time past (which I have no idea how long it was), I could get a mumble out then finally I was fully awake trying to figure out what happened, then so mad I didn't get to finish my race that I trained so hard for. 
My lesson was learnt and unfortunately wrecked me knee and I haven't been able accomplish my dream of running a marathon. 
So if I can write a wee smidge bit of advice about the importance of water and it helps even one person not to repeat what I did, then there you go, mission accomplished. 
Another way to increase our water intake is through food. Food makes up 20% of our intake and the other 80% is fluids.

Better Health Channel is a great site. I wanted to add this article as it tells you so much about the importance of water and as well as dehyration, plus much much more. Once you open  this website, add water in their search section to get,
Water - a vital nutrient | Better Health Channel. Click on it to open it.

Here also on WebMd's site, they have information on first aid involving Heat Illness. Great info to have and know.
So cheers to you and good hydration. Thanks for taking a peek on my reads. Kim

No comments:

Post a Comment