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Benefits of adequate hydration

Malte Wagenbach

Benefits of adequate hydration

We all know that exercise is good for us. It makes us feel better, have more energy and live longer. But did you know that proper hydration also helps keep your body healthy during exercise? You may have heard of the dangers of dehydration before or after exercise, but few people know why it happens and how to prevent it. In this article, we explain what happens when we sweat excessively while exercising and why staying hydrated is so important to stay healthy in hot weather.


Adequate hydration before, during, and after exercise reduces the risk of dehydration or hyponatremia (low sodium).


Water is the most important nutrient for athletes as it is needed for energy production and thermoregulation. Drinking water before and after exercise will help you avoid dehydration or hyponatremia (sodium deficiency).

Dehydration occurs when you lose more fluid than you take in. This can happen from exercising in hot weather, sweating excessively, drinking alcohol or coffee before exercise, or not drinking enough fluids during exercise. Resulting symptoms include: dizziness, light-headedness and nausea, fatigue, muscle weakness, headache, rapid heartbeat, dry mouth or eyes, dark-colored urine with a strong odor (indicating dehydration), and increased thirst (you'll think you're dying of thirst). .

If you are dehydrated during training, it is important to replenish the lost fluid by drinking as soon as possible after training (before going home) so that more fluid is not lost through sweat on the way home from the training location - also known as "post-exercise hypotension".

Hyponatremia occurs when there is too much water in the cells because too much fluid has been ingested without matching sodium intake - up to this point, both conditions are often referred to as "water intoxication" because they have symptoms similar to nausea / vomit (but without pain).

During sweaty workouts, it's important to replenish both water and sodium.


One of the many benefits of staying hydrated is that it helps cool the body down.

Water is important for cooling the body as it promotes the evaporation of sweat from the skin, making you feel less hot, so to speak. Dehydration can affect the body's ability to effectively regulate temperature during exercise. Therefore, make sure that you drink enough water before and after training or competition.

Sodium is important for maintaining electrolyte balance in the body. Electrolytes like sodium and potassium help regulate nerve impulses and muscle contractions throughout the body; a lack of electrolytes can lead to serious health problems such as muscle spasms or seizures. During a sweaty workout, it's important to replenish both water and sodium to keep all of these bodily functions running smoothly!

For athletes who train for more than an hour at a time, it's best to use sports drinks that contain electrolytes like sodium and potassium.


Once you've been training for more than an hour, you should start using sports drinks that contain electrolytes like sodium and potassium. These electrolytes are important for muscle function and nerve impulses.

Sodium is found in table salt and other foods, but getting enough of it can be difficult, especially if you don't get enough salt in your diet. Potassium is found in fruits and vegetables like bananas, oranges, avocados, broccoli, and spinach. If eating lots of fruits and vegetables every day isn't possible, taking a multivitamin can help provide extra potassium without increasing calorie intake.

Most people who exercise regularly are recommended to drink about 600ml of water two hours before exercising to give the body time to digest the liquid before the exercise program begins.


Being dehydrated while exercising can make you dizzy or light-headed.


Dizziness or lightheadedness are typical signs of dehydration. Dehydration can also cause headaches, muscle cramps, fatigue and nausea. If you become really severely dehydrated (if the fluid loss exceeds 2% of your body weight), you may even vomit or faint.


Athletes who consume sports drinks before a workout know that these drinks contain carbohydrates that the body can use for fuel.


Athletes who consume sports drinks before a workout know that these drinks contain carbohydrates that the body can use for fuel. Carbohydrates are the body's preferred fuel source, so it makes sense to replenish muscle glycogen stores before a workout or game.

Carbohydrates are stored in the muscles and liver as glycogen. When you exercise, your muscles break down glycogen into glucose, which they then burn for energy. If you don't have enough glycogen in your body, it becomes difficult to perform at your best during training or competition. Storing extra carbs ahead of time is one way athletes can prevent this.

Carbohydrates are made up of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen atoms bound together by covalent bonds (the same type of bonds that hold atoms together in molecules).


This is how you can tell if you're dehydrated (e.g. when training with little shade in full heat).

To determine if you're dehydrated, especially when running on a paved road in the heat, check the following symptoms:

  • dry feeling in the mouth
  • You are thirsty
  • You sweat more than usual and/or feel like your heart is beating faster than usual

If you notice any of these symptoms, it's important to drink plenty of water to keep your body healthy and functioning normally for as long as possible during this time.


If you drink too much water without electrolytes, your sodium levels can become too low. This condition is called hyponatremia and can be life-threatening.


If you drink too much water without electrolytes, your sodium levels can become too low. This condition is called hyponatremia and can be life-threatening.

Sodium is an electrolyte that is important for the functioning of the body, as well as maintaining fluid balance and blood pressure. Sodium plays a role in many bodily functions, including digestion, nerve impulses, and muscle contraction. Most people get enough sodium from their diet or from foods they eat or drink that have been processed with salt. However, some people with kidney disease cannot effectively filter excess sodium from their bodies, so they must avoid foods high in sodium. For these people, it's important to know which foods are high in sodium so they can choose lower-sodium options whenever possible.


BOTTOM LINE: Your body needs clean water, but also salt and electrolytes to stay healthy when you exercise.

Planning a long run? Then you should take some electrolytes and salt with you.

Sports nutritionists say that water alone is not enough to replenish the body's fluid balance during strenuous exercise. Athletes need a drink that contains sodium, which prevents muscle cramps, as well as other minerals. A good sports drink should contain around 800 milligrams of sodium and 60 milligrams of potassium per 500ml. It should also contain carbohydrates (often in the form of sugars) to provide quick energy in the recovery periods between intense activities, e.g. B. after you've run for an hour or two, but before starting another training session.

Adequate hydration is important for your health. It's even more important when you're training in the heat. Drinking enough water and staying hydrated is crucial. Not drinking enough water while exercising can cause you to become dehydrated and feel dizzy or light-headed. Drinking too much water without electrolytes can also lead to life-threatening hyponatremia.

Tip: Even if you think you don't have time to drink properly during competitions or tough training sessions, remember: if you become dehydrated, the competition is over and your training is over. So taking a few seconds to fill up the reserves is a sustainable and wise decision.

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