You learned it in grade school - humans are 70% water. Every vital system inside your body relies on it. Water helps to remove dangerous toxins from vital organs and transports essential nutrients to your cells. (Reference).
So what's this we're hearing about people overdosing on water? Is it possible?
Short answer is... yes.
Slightly longer but more accurate answer is... under normal circumstances, accidentally consuming too much water is exceptionally rare.
Water intoxication is unlikely, but if it did happen here's why...
The kidneys can't flush out the water fast enough and the blood becomes waterlogged. This excess water dilutes the electrolyte (salt) content of the blood, leading to hyponatremia (insufficient salt in the blood). Severe hyponatremia can then lead to water intoxication. (Reference)
Symptoms include: Headache, nausea, vomiting, confusion, drowsiness, and in rare, extreme cases, death.
But, it takes A LOT of water to experience hyponatremia, and the average adult doesn't come anywhere near it.
Point is, drink plenty of water.
There is no single formula that fits everyone. Understanding your body's need for fluids will help you estimate how much water to drink each day and it depends on many factors, including if you exercise (intensity and duration), environment you live in, pregnancy or breast-feeding, illness or other health conditions.
Do you experience excessive thirst and increased urination?
These are classic symptoms of diabetes.
When you have diabetes, excess sugar builds up in your blood, causing kidneys to work overtime to process it. If your kidneys can't keep up the excess sugar is excreted into the urine along with fluids drawn from other tissues, triggering more frequent urination...which may leave you dehydrated. As you drink more to quench your thirst, it's more trips to the bathroom.
This is another reason why it's important for people with diabetes to maintain stable blood sugar levels.
By pairing up 8 oz water with a packet of Extend Shake mix, you get hydration + up to 9 hours of blood sugar control. Extend snacks convert slowly and won't cause a build-up of excess sugar in the blood!
NOTE: If you suffer from conditions including congestive heart failure, liver failure, kidney failure, pneumonia, and/or diabetes, you may be at an elevated risk for hyponatremia.
*The information provided above is not a substitute for professional medical advice and care. If you have specific needs, please see a professional health care provider.
(Reference) Mayo Clinic http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/water/NU00283/NSECTIONGROUP=2
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