60% of the human body is composed of water. Body fluids assist to hundreds of biological processes every day. That’s why it pays to pay close attention to signs of dehydration. Unfortunately, 75% of American adults suffer from mild to severe cases of dehydration. Dehydration can cause chronic diseases including kidney disease and organ failure.
Without a doubt, hydration is a critical part of nutrition. Drinking enough water every day is essential in maintaining good health and well-being. Signs of dehydration include recurring headaches, dark urine, irritability, bad skin and foul breath. But what are the signs that say you are well-hydrated? Consider our list below:
Pale Yellow Urine
The clearest indication of a well-hydrated body is pale yellow or straw colored urine. Your urine color is related directly to your body’s gain and loss of fluids. When a person is not getting enough water, wastes normally found in urine become even more concentrated. This is the body’s way to conserve water.
If your urine is pale brown, dark yellow or golden in color, take it a sign to drink more water. But if your urine is pale yellow in color, then you are well-hydrated. Do note that some types of foods can darken the color of urine. Some types of medications and laxatives could also darken urine even if you are getting enough water.
You Perspire a Lot
Another clear sign that you are getting enough water every day is that you sweat a lot. Some people aren’t keen to the idea of sweating profusely but take it as a sign that your body is healthy. When your body produces sweat even on moderate temperature, wastes are drawn away from the body. Of course, you need to replace lost fluids from sweating by drinking more water.
When you sweat a lot, the volume of your blood decreases too. This can lead to dehydration, muscle cramps, and headaches. Regardless if you live in a hot, humid climate or you are engaging in intense exercise; make sure to drink periodically when you perspire.
Take the Skin Turgor Test
A great way to check if you are getting enough water is to see how fast your skin bounces back from being pinched. This is called the skin turgor test. If you are well hydrated, your skin should snap back immediately after being pinched. If it took a few seconds before your skin went back to its natural state then it is a clear sign that you need to drink more water!
Do note that certain lifestyle choices and health problems could affect the texture of the skin. Hence, the skin becomes slow to snap back after being pinched. Factors that could affect your turgor results include kidney failure, malnutrition or smoking.
Take the Capillary Refill Test
The capillary refill test is also an excellent way to check if you are well hydrated. The capillary refill test is often used to determine reduced blood circulation in localized parts of the body. But it is also used to identify dehydration. To test yourself, apply pressure to a nail. Check the skin under the nail to see how fast it goes back to its usual color when you release the pressure.
The skin should take no less than 2 seconds to return to its natural color when pressure is applied. A dehydrated individual will suffer poor blood flow and vasoconstriction. If the body responded slowly to pressure than normal (4 seconds and beyond) then you are dehydrated.