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Part 1: Dehydration Facts You Need to Know

Chronic dehydration affects 75 percent of Americans.

That’s right! Only one in four of adults in the U.S. are properly hydrated. In fact, there’s a good chance that you (like tens of millions of other Americans) are dehydrated right now.

But what does that really mean?

Here’s the short answer: The human body is designed to maintain a proper balance of fluids and electrolytes. Your body then uses these electrolytes, which are minerals like sodium and chloride, to rapidly draw water into the bloodstream and rehydrate. And that’s why, although water is needed to stay hydrated, it’s not the best cure for dehydration, because water lacks important electrolytes and sugars.

Dehydration sets in when that fluid/electrolyte balance falls out of step – whether due to rigorous exercise, or vomiting or diarrhea, or a variety of other ailments – and it can wreak havoc on your body and mind. In Part 2 of my blog series, I will take a look at dehydration’s effect on the body. Stay tuned!

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