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Really, why is it so important to hydrate?

We all know water to be one of the single most important things for any living organism. It is not just humans who rely on water intake to stay alive but also a majority of animal and plant life. Water is an essential part of one's life force.

While the reasons to drink enough water a day are widely discussed and available almost anywhere from school flyers to being featured in Nestle pani advertisements, it is important to discuss the situation which leads to dehydration and what exactly dehydration means for the body and mind.

Now, studies once claimed that in order to avoid dehydration, it is essential to drink at least 8 glasses of water a day. New studies done by Mayo Clinic suggest that the correct amount is 2.7-3.7 liters a day, which is roughly between 13-11 cups of water. This is a far cry from the previously mentioned 8! Under the daily limit of water, people begin to face symptoms of dehydration which can begin mildly but become deadly not too long after.

The most basic symptom of dehydration is a persistent headache so watch out next time a panadol tablet doesn’t seem to be bringing around too much relief. This kind of headache is most famous for occurring in the center of the forehead but can be easily managed by correct fluid intake. If not responded to, this headache can worsen into a migraine and cause further symptoms such as dizziness, nausea, and fainting spells.

On a more drastic note, dehydration can also cause you to think unclearly and result in mood changes. As your body overheats and attempts to adjust to the restriction of water in your muscles, you will also begin to experience unpleasant cramping across your whole body. From here, the tiredness and fatigue can continue and you will begin to only feel worse.

Our organs and bodily functions rely heavily on our proper consumption of water. Without this, they begin to go out of order and more extreme circumstances of dehydration are felt. This can result in constipation and kidney stones which can require immediate medical attention if not treated properly on time.

That’s enough fretting though! There are some very useful tips you can keep in mind in order to avoid facing dehydration. Always remember to carry your steel bottle with you! Strangely enough, I remember clearly how not 15 years ago the kids in school with big metal bottles were embarrassed in front of those with their swanky Nike plastic flasks. However, today nearly everyone chooses to carry sleeker models of a metal bottle as it keeps water cool despite the blazing Karachi heat. You should be taking one of these bottles with you everywhere! You’re reducing non-biodegradable waste such as plastic plus you’re able to access a cool drink whenever needed. Remember to fill this bottle up any chance you get! It’s equally important to note your privilege here and it should remind you that apart from money, education, and food, the less fortunate members of our community are in dire need of clean drinking water, especially in the warmer months.

Next time you have the opportunity, buy some water for the kids on the streets in the middle of a hot day— it may not be the yummiest or most intriguing option but water, as discussed above is an essential part of your body and mind feeling well and functional.

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