Bad Effects of Taking Too Much Water in a Day
The best thing you can do for your health is drink plenty of water every day. Not only will it help you feel better, but you’ll also prevent many health issues and make you live longer. But how much water is too much?
According to the Institute of Medicine, 2.7 liters of total fluid intake per day is recommended for adult women and 3.7 liters for men. Whether or not you should drink more than this depends on your age, health conditions and activity level.
Hyponatremia: Excessive water can disrupt your body’s electrolyte balance and lead to a dangerous condition called hyponatremia, in which your blood sodium levels drop. This can result in nausea, vomiting, cramping and exhaustion. In some cases, it can cause severe symptoms and even death.
Reduced Electrolyte levels: When your sodium and potassium levels are too low, it can cause muscle weakness and cramps. You may also have a headache.
Frequent urination: When you’re too dehydrated, your kidneys work hard to get rid of excess water. This means you’ll have to urinate often, sometimes in just about every 15 minutes. This can be difficult or even inconvenient, and can be a major source of stress, especially when you’re at work or school.
Swelling: When your body doesn’t have enough salt in the blood, it can swell in some areas, particularly the face or hands and feet. This can affect your breathing and your brain, and can even lead to a collapse or a seizure.
Headaches: This is another common sign of overhydration, and it’s because the cells in your brain swell in size when you have too much salt in your blood. It can be difficult to think clearly when you have a headache, but it’s important to see your doctor for a diagnosis and treatment.
Weakness: You may have weak muscles when your electrolyte levels are too low, says the Mayo Clinic. When your sodium and potassium levels are too low, you can have muscle spasms or cramping that don’t seem to be related to exercise.
Muscle pain and cramps: When your electrolyte levels are too low, you can experience muscle pain and cramping that can be quite painful, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Weakness: You may have a weakened muscle when your salt and potassium levels are too low, which can be a sign of a serious health issue. This is because the body’s muscles need the salt and potassium that can be found in your fluid intake to function correctly.
If you’re a high-end endurance athlete or are engaging in physical activities that involve a lot of sweating, it’s important to drink more water than usual. Depending on your health and activity level, you may need to drink as much as 3.7 liters of water each day to keep your body properly hydrated.
Overhydration isn’t as common as dehydration, but it’s a potential threat for people who engage in sports and other physically active activities, according to the American Academy of Family Physicians. It’s also a concern for people who have diabetes, high blood pressure or other health problems that increase their fluid loss, such as fever, urinary tract infections, and intestinal disorders.
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