Mike’s Mid Week Blog – Hydration & Health

As the heat has picked up over the last 7 days so the need to drink more has increased. Hydration is regularly overlooked as a contributing factor to health issues or poor performance. In today’s blog I’ll go through what hydration/dehydration are, what signs to look out for both, and also go through some additional points.

Hydration, in relation to our body, is best described as the state at which our body has sufficient water in its tissues. The human body is nearly 2/3 water which is why keeping it hydrated is such an important part of our everyday lifestyle. 

Ways we can hydrate ourselves are via intakes of fluid and food. Water is considered the best way to maintain a healthy hydration level, although we can get fluid via sugary drinks, teas and coffees. Sugary sports drinks are used to quickly hydrate and replace minerals and salts for athletes after intense/prolonged periods of sweating. Just drinking sugary drinks alone without exercise does add additional calories and sugar in our bodies, which depending on your training goal can cause detrimental effects. Drinking tea and coffee alone is not enough to maintain your body’s hydration levels. There is research for both sides to show whether or not caffeine  has a diuretic effect on our body. From personal experience, I  have found just drinking coffee alone without any water after can lead to me feeling dehydrated. As mentioned food can also hydrate our body in particular from fruit vegetables, soups and stews. By googling ‘best foods to hydrate’ this can give you a few ideas of good sources.Below are the benefits of staying hydrated, I’ll go into more detail when talking about effects of poor hydration levels.

Benefits of staying hydrated can contribute towards:

-Healthy Skin

-Good breath

-Supple joints 

-Cooler body temperature 

-lower levels of toxins that can effect organs such as kidneys and liver

-Healthy digestion 

-Aids weight/muscle management

Dehydration is when our body is losing more fluids in comparison to what we are putting in. Signs of dehydration range from:


-Bad breath

-Feeling fatigued

-Increased thirst 

-Feeling bloated

-Darker coloured urine

-Muscle cramps

Other ways our body can dehydrate include:

-Suffering from an illness 

-Excessive amounts of alcohol 


-Sugary foods or drinks 

My clients know how much I go on about staying hydrated. When talking to them in relation to weight management i explain that dehydration can increase appetite leading to overconsumption of calories. So if you find you suffer from hunger cravings late at night, ask yourself “am i hydrated enough?”

Furthermore when dehydrated our energy levels drop and therefore our training workouts are compromised. Your liver is responsible for filtering the blood and if dehydrated the blood can thicken and become harder to filter. With regards to kidneys, medical experts have said that chronic dehydration can lead to persistent constipation and potentialy kidney stones.

So after all this how much water do we need to drink to stay hydrated. Well this depends on the individual and lifestyle associated.

According to the NHS eat well guide we should drink 6-8 glasses of fluid  per day. “Water, lower fat milk, sugar-free drinks including tea and coffee all count Limit fruit juice and/or smoothies to a total of 150ml a day.”

I personally drink a lot more than this but like I said every individual is different. As always consult a medical professional if you require advice. As mentioned above there are many early signs of dehydration so do look after yourselves as the summer approaches. Stay cool people 🙂 

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