Did you know that water accounts for an astounding 75% of our brain mass?! Since our brain is responsible for regulating cognitive performance and mood, it makes sense that insufficient hydration would impair both our ability to engage in physical activities, as well our cognitive function and sense of well-being.
In fact, while most studies focus on the deleterious effects of severe dehydration, there are studies that link even mild dehydration to moodiness, problems concentrating, headaches and fatigue.
Researchers from the University of Connecticut’s Human Performance Laboratory reported that “even mild dehydration – 1.5% loss in normal water volume in the body – that can occur in the course of our ordinary daily activities can degrade how we are feeling.”
UConn’s tests showed that it didn’t matter if a person had just walked for 40 minutes on a treadmill or was sitting at rest – the adverse effects from mild dehydration were the same. This reiterates the importance of staying properly hydrated at all times, not just during exercise or extreme temperatures.
Furthermore, the negative consequences on mood and cognition due to dehydration are seen across genders and generations. Specifically, both mild and more moderate-severe dehydration can result in:
- Impaired working (aka, short-term) memory
- Increased perception of task difficulty
- Mood deterioration
- Impaired vigilance
- Increased anxiety, tension, and fatigue
An important fact to note is that it’s not just water per se that our brains need in order to function properly. Adequate blood flow to the brain (and all body systems) is essential for maintaining optimum functioning. Blood flow to the brain is governed by our blood pressure, which is directly related to the amount of water in our bodies. If we don’t take in enough water, our blood pressure can become imbalanced, resulting in reduced blood flow to the brain. Not only can this result in “brain fog” and mood disturbances, but can also cause us to feel dizzy and even faint.
Proper hydration is also incredibly important for other aspects of our health, such as
- Carrying nutrients and oxygen to cells
- Optimal digestion & metabolism
- Decreasing inflammation
- Preventing cardiovascular and urinary diseases
- Lubricating joints
- Protecting organs and tissues
- Regulating body temperature
- Maintaining electrolyte balance
- Nurturing skin, hair, and nails
Unfortunately, our thirst sensation doesn’t appear until we are 1-2% dehydrated. At that point, dehydration is already starting to negatively impact how our mind and body perform.
Moreover, consuming the recommended “8 glasses of water per day” can seem overwhelming and impossible to achieve, even if you’re working from home. One way to provide your body with adequate, long-lasting hydration is through an IV drip. IV hydration enters your bloodstream directly and quickly circulates through your body for optimum cell delivery and use.
Want to learn more about the benefits of IV therapy? Check out our blog post 5 Reasons You Should Consider Getting a Nutrient IV, or talk to one of our medical professionals about boosting your hydration status ASAP!