Dehydration May Increase Risk Of Death By Up To 20%

Photo by Kampus Production courtesy of Pexels.com

Photo by Kampus Production courtesy of Pexels.com

A new study has found that not consuming enough water can increase the risk of death by 20%. The study, conducted by a team of researchers from various institutions, analyzed data from over 20,000 adults and found a clear link between low water intake and an increased risk of death from all causes.

The study used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), a nationally representative sample of the US population. The researchers analyzed data on the water intake of more than 20,000 adults and followed them for an average of nearly 15 years. They found that those who consumed less than four cups of water per day had a significantly higher risk of death from all causes than those who consumed at least four cups per day.

The increased risk of death was particularly pronounced for those who consumed less than two cups of water per day and had a 30% higher risk of death than those who consumed at least four cups per day. The study also found that the increased risk of death was not limited to any specific age group or gender, but was seen across all ages and genders.

The researchers note that the study does not prove that low water intake causes an increased risk of death, but rather that there is an association between the two. However, the study does provide strong evidence for the importance of maintaining adequate water intake to maintain good health.

There are several possible reasons why low water intake may be associated with an increased risk of death. One possibility is that low water intake may lead to dehydration, which can have serious consequences for health. Dehydration can cause a range of symptoms, including dizziness, fatigue, and muscle cramps, and it can also lead to more serious health problems such as kidney stones, heat stroke, and seizures.

Another possibility is that low water intake may be a marker for other unhealthy behaviors or conditions that increase the risk of death. For example, people who consume low amounts of water may also be more likely to smoke, drink alcohol excessively, or have poor diets, all of which are known to increase the risk of death.

“People whose middle-age serum sodium exceeds 142 mmol/l have increased risk to be biologically older,” researchers wrote in the study.

Most shockingly, that cohort also had a nearly 20% increase in the risk of premature death, the study suggested. They showed a greater likelihood of developing fatal diseases such as heart failure, stroke, diabetes, dementia, and chronic lung diseases.

Overall, the study highlights the importance of adequate water intake to maintain good health. The authors recommend that adults aim to consume at least four cups of water per day. However, the amount of water needed will depend on a person's age, gender, weight, and level of physical activity. It is also important to remember that water intake can come from various sources, including not just plain water but also other beverages such as coffee, tea, and fruit juices, as well as foods such as fruits and vegetables.

10 Ways To Keep Yourself Hydrated

  1. Keep a water bottle with you at all times and take regular sips throughout the day.
  2. Drink a glass of water first thing in the morning to hydrate after a night of sleep.
  3. Eat water-rich foods such as fruits and vegetables, which can help to boost your hydration levels.
  4. Drink water or other hydrating beverages during and after exercise to replace fluids lost through sweat.
  5. Choose water instead of sugary drinks like soda or sports drinks, which can actually increase dehydration.
  6. Drink herbal teas, which can help to hydrate the body and provide additional health benefits.
  7. Drink water with meals to help aid in digestion.
  8. Use a hydration tracker app to monitor your water intake and remind you to drink throughout the day.
  9. Keep a jug of water in the fridge for a refreshing, cold drink on hot days.
  10. If you have trouble remembering to drink water, set reminders for yourself on your phone or computer.
Author
Dr. Mark L. Meyer Dr. Meyer graduated from Haverford College with a Bachelor of Science, High Honors, in cellular and molecular biology, Phi Beta Kappa, Magna Cum Laude. He attended the Yale University School of Medicine, where he also completed a categorical residency in Internal Medicine, served for one year as an Emergency Department attending physician, and held the title of Clinical Instructor in the Department of Surgery. During this time, Dr. Meyer obtained a J.D. from the Yale Law School, concentrating on medical ethics, scientific research law, and FDA law. He then completed a fellowship in Cardiovascular Diseases at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, where he obtained Level 3 Nuclear Cardiology training.

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