Dehydration – Prevention
The goal is to raise our Hydration awareness, and learn what measures we can take to prevent dehydration.
Dehydration happens when we take in less fluids than our bodies are losing. This situation can be prevented by:
- Drinking plenty of water before, during, and after periods where you are active (work or exercise). This is very important when it is hot out and you are doing an intense activity. Try to drink at least every 15-20 minutes. If the period of intense activity is longer than 1 hour, then consider a sports drink to replenish electrolytes and minerals that you are losing through sweat. A good choice in a sports drink is Gatorade – which contains both carbohydrates and electrolytes.
- Do not drink coffee, colas or other drinks that contain caffeine. These cause increased urine output and you will dehydrate faster.
- Avoid high protein diets. If you are on a high protein diet, make sure to drink 8-12 glasses of water each day.
- Do not drink alcohol, including beer and wine. They increase dehydration.
- Do not take salt tablets. Most people get plenty of salt in their diets.
- Stop working or exercising if you feel dizzy, light headed, or very tired.
- Wear one layer of lightweight, light-colored clothing when you are working or exercising outdoors. If clothing becomes soaked through sweating, change into dry clothes as soon as possible.