I received a request from a reader asking for help. Several guys at his work have been passing out from dehydration. This is obviously a concern with the hot summer is in full effect, especially here in Florida.
In fact, I was cleaning my car out over the weekend and within 10 minutes I was dripping sweat all over the car seat - to the point where my 4 year-old son Brixton, asked me why the car was sweating!
Sweat is our body’s simple way of preventing overheating. As you sweat you lose water and key electrolytes. If you sweat heavily during work or training, it’s important to replace the fluids and electrolytes lost. Hydration is key to keeping your energy levels high and healthy all day long.
Electrolytes help maintain a normal balance of fluids within the body. They assist in maintaining a balance of pressure between the inside and outside of cells and help to support the systems that regulate blood pressure. Hydration and electrolyte balance are also critical to nerve and muscle function. For example, muscle contraction is dependent upon the presence of calcium, sodium, and potassium.
Electrolytes lost during exercise, particularly workouts that are long lasting or strenuous, can lead to fatigue, dehydration, and muscle cramps. People who work or exercise in extreme heat or humidity, for three hours or longer, are at risk of dehydration.
Risks of Dehydration
• Dehydration can lead to fatigue and muscle cramps which can interfere with your workout performance
• Losing just 2% of body weight in fluid can decrease physical and mental performance by up to 25%.
• Losing 10% or more of your body weight in sweat can put you at risk of death!
Signs of Dehydration • Your urine is ‘apple juice’ in color • Decreased urine output • Increased thirst • Dry mouth and swollen tongue • Weakness • Dizziness • Palpitations (feeling that the heart is jumping or pounding) • Confusion • Sluggishness fainting • Fainting • Inability to sweat
Preventing Dehydration • Consider taking an electrolyte supplement that supplies sodium, potassium, chloride, calcium and magnesium to help replenish electrolytes and retain hydration. We recommend Klean Electrolyte because it has all the essential electrolytes your body needs, without sugar or artificial sweeteners. • Drink fluids that contain electrolytes, like coconut water. Coconut water contains more potassium than a banana and other electrolytes which are key in replenishing what we’re losing during exercise. The one thing it lacks is sufficient sodium. • Don’t consume “sports drinks” high in sugar. • Many foods are great sources of fluid - drinks like tea and coffee can count toward your fluid consumption.
• Coffee and tea are 99.5% water
• Lettuce and cucumbers are 96% water; broccoli and cauliflower ~91%; spinach and cabbage ~93%; watermelon, grapefruit and cantaloupe fall at around 90-92%; peaches, plums, apricots, blueberries, pears and oranges ~85-87%
• Soup and broth count too!
I’d love to hear from you! Share your questions, thoughts and stories.