June 30, 2023
Hydration Motivation: The Importance of Staying HydratedWe don’t often think about the importance of staying hydrated. We may go for hours and hours without a sip. We may wait until we’re thirsty to get a drink. Generally, you should drink ⅓ of your weight (in pounds) in ounces of water daily. For example, if you weigh 150 pounds, drink 50 ounces of water (or other hydrating beverages) daily. Many health problems and medications can affect the amount of water we need, so it’s best to talk with your doctor about your specific needs.
Why is hydration important for seniors?As we get older, our ability to regulate the amount of water in our body declines. What’s more, our lifestyle and habits may change over time. We may have been more active, naturally drinking more water. But now we don’t exercise as much or at high intensity. We may have commuted to work every day with a drink in the cup holder. We sat at our desks with a tumbler of water within reach, a constant reminder to take a drink. For seniors, we need to maintain a 55% level of water in our bodies. Dehydration, even in mild cases, can harm health and exacerbate existing medical conditions. Symptoms like confusion, dizziness, fatigue, joint pain and constipation can result from inadequate hydration.
Staying hydrated aids in healingThe importance of staying hydrated extends beyond everyday life for seniors. It becomes even more critical when recovering from an illness, injury, or medical procedure. During these times, the body requires additional support to heal and regain strength and adequate hydration plays a vital role. Some of the ways hydration helps you heal include:
- Facilitating tissue repair
- Reducing inflammation
- Flushing out toxins or byproducts from medications
- Managing side effects of medications
- Increasing energy levels
- Improving mobility
Tips for staying hydrated during recovery:
- Set reminders
- Eat hydrating foods
- Drink hydrating beverages
- Keep fluids easily accessible
- Bring water with you wherever you go