Health Benefits of Hydrating
When the temperature rises in the summer, so does the risk of dehydration and hyperthermia for older adults. Unfortunately, dehydration is one of the more common reasons for hospitalization in seniors. Most of our body is made up of water and our body loses water through normal everyday functions. You lose water when you go to the bathroom or sweat, but you even lose small amounts of water when you exhale (www.cdc.gov). You need to replace this lost water to prevent dehydration.
In addition to the natural aging process, some medications also alter the way our bodies take in water. It is important to talk with your doctor to see how much water you need while taking your prescriptions. While many seniors find they are not as thirsty as they were earlier in life. It is more important that they continue to drink 6-8 glasses of water each day.
Tips to staying hydrated:
- Keep a glass or bottle of water near you so you can sip throughout the day.
- Avoid caffeinated and sugary drinks when possible.
- Eat fruits and vegetables rich in water including oranges, melon, tomatoes, and cucumbers.
- Give your water a little pizzazz by adding a wedge of lime or lemon. This may improve the taste, and you just might drink more water than you usually do.
Dehydration Warning Signs:
If you experience weakness, headache, muscle cramps, dizziness, confusion, or passing out, get help. Call your doctor or 911.