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December 29, 2018

Drink Up: Stay Hydrated this Summer!

by Lisa Donaldson APD29 January 2016

With such extreme heat hitting Australia over the past few weeks, I thought it was time to look at keeping our bodies well hydrated.

Up to two thirds of the body is water - this equates to 42L of water in a 70kg person! Water is absolutely crucial to the functions and metabolism of the body and while we can survive several weeks without food, without water we would not survive beyond a few days.

Despite this, many of us do not drink enough to maintain an adequate hydration level. Part of the reason for this is that our thirst mechanisms are relatively poor and we do not feel thirsty until we are already considerably dehydrated. Some of the symptoms of dehydration include headaches, fatigue, low energy, dry mouth and/or bad breath and a reduced ability to exercise.

Water needs vary depending on diet, activity, environmental temperature, and humidity. A general water requirement is difficult to establish. On average the daily losses of water total about 2.5L. In addition to urine, water is lost from the lungs as vapour and from the skin as sweat.

The Nutrient Reference Values (NHMRC) state the ranges for fluid requirements to be:

Children 1-8 years: 1-1.2L/day (4-5 cups)
Boys 9-18 years: 1.6-1.9L/day (6-8 cups)
Girls 9-18 years: 1.4-1.6L/day (5-6 cups)
Men 19-70 years: 2.6L/day (10 cups)
Women 19-70 years: 2.1L/day (8 cups)

Tips to Ensure a Good Water Intake

• Always carry a water bottle with you – keep one in the car, at work, in and in your gym bag

• Fill a large bottle of water in the morning and keep it on your desk or at home – make sure you have finished it through the course of the day

• If you’re not too keen on plain water try adding sliced lemon or mint leaves for extra flavour

• Always order a jug of water for the table in restaurants or try sparkling water with a twist of lemon

• 1 hour before exercise drink 500ml of water, during exercise drink at least 100ml every 10 minutes and after exercise drink a further 500ml

Keep hydrated folks and become friends with water this summer!
Sip, sip, slurp!

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