Water is important. Water is very important. Well over half the human body is made up of water. Of course, with this, many of the processes that take place in the body involve water in some way. The body has a way as well of not just using water but doing away with it as well. Through breathing, sweating, urinating, and bowel -movements (to name a few), the body actually rids itself of water. Because of these processes, it becomes imperative that our bodies are replenished with water throughout the day or things could get not so pleasant, and even deadly.
When the body’s water content is low, this throws the body out of balance. This state is called dehydration. Dehydration is a condition that can occur when the loss of body fluids, mostly water, exceeds the amount that is taken in. With dehydration, more water is moving out of individual cells and then out of the body than the amount of water that is taken in through drinking.
Dehydration has levels of occurrence. Mild dehydration is usually when the body is low on fluids and can easily be replenished by orally consuming fluids to bring everything back to a balance. This usually occurs when a person may not have remembered to drink any fluids throughout the day and simply begins to feel sluggish and drained. Many times, signs of mild dehydration are thirst, headaches, and even dizziness.
Mild to sever dehydration usually occurs with lack of fluid intake on top of excessive exercise or activity, or even being in a high temperature environment that causes the body to sweat. So, as the body lacks the presence of water, it is pushing out whatever it does have through sweating. This kind of dehydration can get very serious very fast. Since the body is composed of mostly water, this also includes the muscles and their function. When we exercise, those muscles are dependent on the water in them to perform. As we deplete our bodies of that water, the muscles lose a lot of their potential and ability and can lock up (cramp) or spasm uncontrollably.
Along with the muscle issues, once again one will experience sever dizziness, headaches, loss of energy, and even vomiting because the body is letting you know it is way out of balance with fluids. Many times, the only way to bring that balance back into where it needs to be is fluids being entered intravenously (IV), which means you will be hanging out in the hospital for a while.
Dehydration, if not treated properly, can lead to death. Many people will assume they are ok and simply pass out. The lack of fluids simply puts the body through a hectic warfare that sadly at times, it ends up losing. So, make sure you are filled up on your fluids for the day, especially if you are an athlete. A good rule of thumb is shoot for a full gallon of water daily.