Our bodies depend on water

Around 60% of our body weight is water. It is found in all cells and the fluid that surrounds them. It supports many vital functions including:

  • Carrying nutrients around the body and removing waste products.
  • Regulating normal body temperature: When the temperature soars, the best way to replace water lost through breathing, sweating and urination, is with water. This doesn’t mean vitamin waters or sports drinks loaded with sugar – just plain water suffices.

Dehydration is dangerous

There are 3 types of dehydration with the third point being the most common:

  • Primary loss of water (hypertonic dehydration).
  • Primary loss of vital mineral salts, called electrolytes (hypotonic dehydration).
  • Equal loss of water and electrolytes (isotonic dehydration).

A water loss of 3% to 5% diminishes sporting performance by approximately 20%. Symptoms of mild dehydration are noticeable around a loss of just 2%. These can include: fatigue, headaches, dizziness, dark yellow urine with strong odour, dryness of eyes and mouth, and flushed skin.