The significance of proper hydration is vital for an athlete, while dehydration is the worst scenario after an injury.

Muscles consist seventy percent of water, while cells almost ninety percent, while water is the solvent in which all micronutrients are dissolved and transported in tissues.

By the moment we feel thirsty, we are already dehydrated, while losing 5% of your bodyweight in water, has a significant negative impact in your performance.

Muscle spasms, known as cramps, are based on electrolyte imbalances and mainly on magnesium, the key element for muscle contraction.

Moreover other minerals and electrolytes such as calcium, potassium (the main intracellular element), sodium (the main extracellular element) and chlorine are also important.

Muscles get flat when we deplete from glycogen stores, because glycogen consists of starch and water.

 So under ketonic or low carb diets it seems obligatory getting well hydrates with mineral water.

The amount of water we have to drink depends on a variety of different parameters such as: 1) Temperature

2) Humidity

3) BMI

4) Exercise intensity

5) Time of physical activity

6) Plasma osmolality

Generally for every twenty pounds of bodyweight, we should drink one ounce of water under resting conditions (almost three litters for hundredth kilos person).

Humidity increases sweating, because there is not enough evaporation of sweat, a natural cooling down process.

While eating salt and crabs with elevate osmolality of plasma, in other words of higher density, thus we need extra water to dilute it into normal concentration.

Isotonic drinks provide sodium and other electrolytes that will restore and balance them after exercise, but more important their salty taste will force us to drink extra water. Moreover the isotonic concentration of carbs they provide (6% of maltodextrin disaccharide for instance), will also balance lower blood glucose levels.

On the other hand, fruit juices that are hypertonic are not a good choice of hydration, simply because they leave stomach much slower, so they don’t provide fast hydration.

Besides their higher concentration in sugars, will increase plasma osmolality and the desire of extra water in order to dilute it.

Substances that dehydrate are caffeine, green tea, alcohol, clenbuterol, ephedrine, amphetamines and thyroxine.

All of which stimulate adrenaline and CNS, with the exemption of ethanol that blocks anti-diuretic hormone.

There is also a rare case of water intoxication, which is based on extreme hydration, leading to remarkable diluted plasma and hyponatremia.

Hypotension and headaches, along with nausea and dizziness are the symptoms.

This is a standard mechanism we follow before the show, in order to eliminate extra water hidden in the subcutaneous area.

Water itself will block ADH, leading to further urination and this reflects to more dry physique. Under such cases plasma urea lowers, so does hematocrit.


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