What Happens to Your Brain When You Are Dehydrated?

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According to the latest research, dehydration can highly affect your brain, mood, and ability to think. Even a tiny amount of dehydration, like not drinking water for a few hours during summer, can highly affect the brain functions.

As Dr. Harris Lieberman, claims, the brain is very sensitive to minor changes, especially to the decreased amounts of potassium and sodium in the body’s fluids.

Besides, the human body is 60% water, so a decreased amounts of fluids in the body can cause some major problems for the overall health. Furthermore, the body needs water to function properly.

For example, it needs to lubricate the joints, regulate body temperature, flush out waste, protect organs, carry nutrients, oxygen, and dissolve minerals. Therefore, you need to constantly replenish the body’s water supply.

So, drink a lot of fluids to be hydrated at all times. This way, you can improve your memory and body’s functions.

Dehydration Makes the Brain Smaller

When you deprive the brain of water, it dehydrates and shrinks.

As research claims, even a temporary dehydration can have a huge impact on your mood and brain functions. In this research, the 20 women who were deprived of beverages for 24 hours had a severe impact on their mood.

Even though there were no clinical abnormalities, like blood, saliva and urine changes, their heart rate increased. Luckily, 20 minutes after they drank water, the effects reversed and their positive mood returned.

But, for a more accelerated recovery, they had to drink cold water instead of room temperature one. Have in mind that sugary drinks won’t have the same effect as water, and they can’t be used for hydrating your body.

A study in Harvard found out that more than 50% of children in America are dehydrated and have decreased their academic performance and their overall health. In addition, a quarter of children don’t drink water every day, and 75% of boys are more dehydrated than girls.

The reason behind this claim is because of the fact that children drink more sugary beverages rather than water and healthy drinks.

Dehydration Can Affect the Ability to Drive

When you don’t drink enough fluids, you have a hard time concentrating on certain things. As a result, your cognitive functions decrease and you make far more errors than ever before, similar to filling drunk.

To conclude these theories, there were some tests in which hydrated drivers drank 200 ml of water every hour, and other drivers who drank only 25 ml every hour. As the tests claim, the drivers who drank less water made far too many errors.

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Moreover, their brain activity decreased along with their alertness and memory capacity. Similar to the drivers who didn’t get enough sleep.

Signs of Dehydration

The symptoms of dehydration range from minor to severe. But, you can easily recognize any of them. Here is a list of all the signs of dehydration.

  • Decreased urine output
  • Dry skin
  • Few or no tears
  • Headache
  • Increased thirst
  • Dry mouth
  • Tired or sleepy
  • Dizziness
  • Urine is low volume and more yellowish than normal

However, if you don’t get enough liquids after a longer period, those symptoms can become far more severe. For example:

  • Blood pressure drops
  • Dizziness or lightheadedness – hard time walking
  • Fever
  • Lethargy, confusion, or coma
  • Poor skin elasticity
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Seizure
  • Severely decreased urine output or no urine output.
  • Shock

How to Stay Hydrated

It is very easy to stay hydrated at all times. All you have to do is drink a lot of water or drinks that don’t contain too many sugars. Especially, if you workout, you should drink 10 ounces every 15 minutes, to give the body more energy to keep exercising.

Moreover, you should drink whenever you feel thirsty, at least 6 glasses of water per day. As a result, your brain will function at all times and you won’t lose electrolytes and sodium.

Source: Mercola | Emedicine Health | Cooper Aerobics | Shape | MindGamer

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