Our bodies depend on water for a multitude of things. The Mayo clinic explains that water is critical for flushing out waste, regulating body temperature and our tissue and organ health. We lose water through sweat, urine and exhaling and more so if we’ve had caffeine or alcohol. In general, we tend to notice that our water intake is low when we feel thirsty. But it may surprise you that your body has some other more sneaky ways of telling you that you’re dehydrated and in order to feel and function at your best, you better listen and drink some water.
Obviously if you’re hungry you should eat. But sometimes if you’ve eaten recently or have a craving for something salty you might just be dehydrated. Your liver needs enough water to function and if it isn’t getting it will send a signal for fuel. Sometimes we identify this signal as hunger when we’re actually dehydrated. If you have eaten recently, try drinking a glass of water and see if 15 minutes later you are no longer hungry.
You have bad breath.
Yucky, we know. Bad breath can be caused by many things including dehydration. If you are not drinking enough water your saliva production goes down because the fluids are directed elsewhere for more important things and your body’s ability to fight odor causing germs isn’t as effective. So, if you notice your breath is less than fresh drink 8oz of water and see whether that resolves the issue.
You are irritable.
Low blood sugar and being hungry make many of us grumpy. But did you know that similarly being dehydrated can also make you feel agitated and short-tempered? Again, if you find yourself impatient with co-workers or snapping at people, try drinking some water.
You’re having trouble focusing.
Even mild dehydration can affect your cognitive abilities including focus and short term memory. This is because dehydration affects brain structure and function. So, if you’re feeling “brain fog” and having trouble concentrating try chugging some water.
There are more signs that you could be dehydrated including even less glamorous ones like constipation (eew), loss of skin elasticity, and heartburn. Instead of stressing about the exact ounces you need to stay hydrated, listen to your body’s cues and make sure you are drinking water throughout the day. The easiest way to do it is to have a bkr by your side at all times. Choose a 500mL little for walks and travel, a 250mL teeny when you’re jetting around a city or in your littlest purse and a big 1L for your nightstand and on your desk.