There are two essential elements necessary for the survival of all living things: oxygen and water. In this respect, water can be defined as a critical element that ensures biological life maintenance.
In the body, water intake and excretion are carried out in a certain balance. The amount of water consumed daily should protect the fluid volume in the body. To preserve the body’s fluid volume, daily fluid intake should be equal to daily fluid loss. Deterioration of this primary fluid balance will cause disorders to occur. Consuming a sufficient amount of water for the body allows most of the body’s trace elements to be met. When this happens, the results are reflected through the beauty of the skin and the strengthening of the immune system. The risk of developing colds, urinary tract infections, kidney stones, and bladder cancer is reduced with adequate water intake.
In order not to encounter serious situations and to avoid diseases, plenty of water should be consumed. The amount of water consumed is responsible for the overall health of the body. The state of the body’s water level is easily learned with specific tests. According to the results, it is now easier to take precautions.
What is urine specific gravity test?
The urine specific gravity test compares urine density to water density. This can help determine your hydration level and how well your kidneys are diluting the urine.
What is the urine specific gravity used for?
The main reason we use urine specific gravity is to assess hydration levels. When we combine the specific gravity with our other parameters, it gives information about your organ functions such as the kidneys’ wellness.
What are the possible results?
First, you need to know that water’s specific gravity is 1000. Since urine contains different waste products filtered by the kidneys, we expect the urine specific gravity to be higher than 1000. The urine specific gravity can range from 1005 to 1035. A value close to 1000 indicates that you drink too much water and are overhydrated, and a value of more than 1020 indicates that you aren’t drinking not enough water and are dehydrated.
Dehydration is a biological event that occurs when someone uses or loses more fluid than they take in. As a result, there is not enough water and fluid in the body to perform routine functions. Approximately 65% of the human body is made up of water. It loses an average of 2.5-3 liters of water per day. When the lost fluids are not replaced, there will be dehydration. In addition to water loss, minerals such as sodium, calcium, potassium that regulate the body’s electrolyte balance are also thrown out.
Mild signs of dehydration are the sensation of thirst, muscle cramps, headache, dryness, and coldness of the skin, decreased urination and dark yellow urine, dry and sticky mouth.
Severe dehydration signs are difficult with urinating, urine that is very dark yellow or amber, dry and wrinkled skin, confusion, loss of consciousness, increased heart rate and breathing, dizziness, squinting in eyes, and low blood pressure, especially when standing up.
Dehydration can occur due to simple reasons such as forgetting to drink water, not having enough water on hand, not being able to consume enough while traveling, and other reasons as summarized below.
Sudden onset of severe diarrhea and accompanying vomiting, which is common especially in infants and children, high fever caused by infection or heat stroke, excessive sweating due to excessive exercise or high temperature, excessive urination due to chronic diseases such as diabetes, diseases that cause the kidneys to lose their water retention, diuretics, blood pressure, and antihistaminic drugs, alcohol consumption, endurance sports such as marathon running, climbing, triathlon.
Loss of fluid can lead to dehydration. Signs of dehydration are:
- Decreasing in physical performance
- Decreasing in mental performance
- Impaired cognitive function
- Decreasing in stamina
- Having higher than normal heart rate
- Migraine attacks
The most effective method to remedy dehydration is to replace lost fluids and lost electrolytes. The best approach to dehydration depends on age, severity, and cause of dehydration. In general, increasing water consumption is the most appropriate solution in mild and moderate dehydration. Fluids containing electrolytes may also be preferred when fluids are lost due to excessive exercise. For severe dehydration, it is crucial to take the patient to the nearest medical center.
For mild to moderate dehydration due to diarrhea, vomiting, or fever, drinking more water or other liquids can improve conditions.
Coldwater is the best option for working or exercising outside in hot or humid weather. Sports drinks that contain electrolytes and carbohydrate solutions can also help. Cases of severe dehydration can recover faster with the help of intravenous salt and water solutions (saline).
Benefits of staying hydrated
Hydration: It keeps the water and electrolyte levels required for the body at a certain level to increase efficiency. Water lost during daily activities must be returned to the body. Otherwise, a dangerous situation will occur. Hydration, which plays a role in everything from mental focus to joint health, means the water leaving and entering the body is in balance. Reaching maximum efficiency in daily life can only be achieved through hydration.
Does enough water help prevent health problems?
Water is essential for life and is considered to be a nutrient. Water and other beverages play a role in the digestion, absorption, and transportation of our food to the cells, the formation of biochemical reactions necessary for life and health, the functioning of cells, tissues, organs, and systems, transport and disposal of dangerous substances resulting from metabolism, control of body temperature and lubrication of joints. In addition to all of these, it also provides essential minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and fluorine. Herein, the fulfillment of body functions is possible by maintaining the water balance called “hydration”.
How much water do we really need?
Daily water needs vary from person to person. Age, weight, health status, medications are taken, exercise and environmental factors make a difference in daily water consumption. Studies underline that an adult woman should drink 2.7 liters per day and a man 3.7 liters per day. However, it should not be forgotten that foods with a high amount of water, such as watermelon and cucumber, are great sources of water and you can also eat your water!
How do I know if I’m drinking enough?
If enough water is not taken into the body for a few days, certain symptoms appear in the body. These symptoms are dry mouth, dry skin, dry eyes, joint pain, prolonged illness, fatigue, frequent hunger, and various digestive problems.
Drinking too much water can be dangerous to health, and this phenomenon is called overhydration. Overhydration can lead to water poisoning. It occurs when the amount of salt and other electrolytes in the body becomes too dilute. Hyponatremia is a condition in which sodium (salt) levels are dangerously low. It is the primary concern of overhydration.
There are two main types of overhydration. The first is “Increased water intake”, which occurs when more water is drunk than the kidneys can excrete in the urine. It can cause too much water to pool in the bloodstream. The second event is called Water Retention, and this event occurs due to the body not being able to get rid of water properly. Some medical conditions can also cause excessive water retention in the body. Both of these are dangerous. The reason is that the balance between water and sodium in the blood is neglected.
The most common symptom of overhydration is a headache. Feelings of nervousness and confusion are also related to overhydration. The most severe symptoms of overhydration are double vision, difficulty breathing, increased blood pressure, and numbness. In addition to these symptoms, nausea, vomiting, body swelling, and muscle spasms can also be seen.
Overhydration is the imbalance of fluids. It happens when the body takes in more fluid than the kidneys can extract or retain excess fluid. Drinking too much water or not having a way to remove it can cause water levels to rise. Water needs vary according to age, gender, weather, activity level, and general dependency. Common conditions such as extreme heat, strenuous activity, long duration of the activity, and febrile illness require higher than average fluid intake. In a healthy person, urine is an indicator of an overhydration state.
Some medications and health conditions can cause your body to over hydrate by holding more fluid; the following are some examples:
- Congestive heart failure
- Liver disease
- Kidney problems
- Uncontrolled diabetes
Other conditions and medications can make you dehydrated, causing increased water intake. These include:
- Dry mouth
How is it improved?
The type of treatment for overhydration is determined by how severe the symptoms are and what caused the condition. Treatments can include:
- Reducing fluid intake,
- Stopping the medications that cause the problem,
- Changing sodium intake habits in severe cases.
Why use Vivoo?
It is unique that Vivoo informs us about our body’s water level by giving us feedback in a straightforward and fast way. You sometimes forget to fulfill your most basic needs due to the intensity, workload, and responsibilities in your daily lives. Using Vivoo, you can learn about your body’s hydration level, learn the precautions you will take according to the situation you are in, and learn how far these situations have progressed by taking a very simple test.
Related: Vivoo Water Box
How Vivoo keep us on track?
Vivoo helps us learn the hydration level of our body by measuring specific gravity thanks to the strip tests it contains. According to these test results, it gives specific advice to us and maximizes our body health. Vivoo not only tells the test results but also offers us nutritional advice according to the hydration state of our body. Thanks to these suggestions, the hydration level can always be followed regularly.
What affects water consumption?
The total amount of water to be consumed can be changed by taking into account daily activities, the climate, health conditions, and pregnancy.
If exercising or engaging in any activity that causes sweating, extra water consumption is needed to compensate for the lost fluid.
Hot or humid weather can cause sweating and require additional fluid consumption. Besides, the heated air in closed areas in winter can cause the skin to lose moisture.
In the presence of fever, vomiting, and diarrhea, the body loses extra water. In these cases, more water should be drunk. Also, if certain conditions such as a bladder infection or urinary tract stones develop, more water consumption may be needed. On the other hand, several conditions such as heart failure, certain kidney, liver, or adrenal gland diseases may impair water excretion. Even these such situations may require a limitation of the amount of water taken into the body.
People who are pregnant or breastfeeding need to drink extra water to stay hydrated. Large amounts of water should be taken, especially during breastfeeding.
Is water the only option for staying hydrated?
One of the easiest ways to get the body hydrated is to drink plenty of water. However, some vegetables and fruits can be consumed to maintain the body’s water balance. These are:
Cucumber: Cucumber contains 95% water in its content. Therefore, it is a beneficial vegetable in terms of replacing the liquid lost in the summer heat.
Tomato: Tomato saves cells from dehydration with nearly 95% water content.
Watermelon: The water content of watermelon is 92%. Besides, it contains beta-carotene, lycopene, and vitamin C.
Yogurt: Yoghurt includes 80% water. It is also an intestinal regulator with beneficial bacteria.
Strawberry: Strawberry, which is very rich in vitamin C, is made up of more than 90% water. It prevents cardiovascular diseases and helps fight infections.
In addition to drinking water, eating fruits and vegetables can keep the body hydrated.