Did you know that when you feel thirsty, you are already dehydrated? Dehydration can have an array of negative effects on your body; some which may surprise you.
Here are 10 ways dehydration can negatively affect your health and weight loss efforts.
Fatigue: When you are dehydrated your blood pressure drops, heart rate increases, and blood flow to the brain slows — all of which can make you tired according to Luga Podesta, MD, sports medicine specialist.
Headache: Slowed blood flow and oxygen to the brain due to dehydration can cause a mild to severe headache.
Bladder or kidney problems: A dehydrated body means more toxins, and acid waste. Hence an environment where bacteria thrives. This means the bladder and kidney are more prone to infection, inflammation and pain.
Asthma and allergies: When dehydrated, your body will constricts airways as a means to conserve water.
Joint pain and stiffness: Cartilage padding within joints is composed mainly of water. Dehydration causes cartilage to be weakened, and joint repair to slow.
Skin: Dehydration impairs elimination of toxins through the skin and therefore makes it more vulnerable. Also, your organs, including your largest organ (the skin) begins to wrinkle.
Muscle cramps: Blood circulation is weakened from dehydration. When it comes to muscles, “the body will protect its vital organs, so it shifts fluid away from muscles and anything that’s not vital” says Ray Casciari, MD. This also means longer recovery time after a workout.
Weight gain: The body does not eliminate toxins effectively when you are dehydrated. This requires toxins to be stored in fat cells. The body will not release fat unless it is sufficiently hydrated to safely remove toxins.
Decreased Athletic Performance: “A 2% dehydration level in your body causes a 10% decrease in athletic performance,” says sports dietician Amy Goodson.
Slowed metabolism: Drinking water can speed your metabolism and burn calories. A study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism found that drinking water (about 17oz) increases metabolic rate by 30 percent in healthy men and women.
Moral of the story: Drink up! Water is essential to the human body. You’ll be amazed how much better you perform and feel with proper water intake. Not sure what the proper amount is? As fitness trainer Kristin suggested in our recent article, half of your body weight in ounces of water daily is a good goal to strive for.
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