When the weather cools down, the air tends to get drier, and this can lead to dehydration just by the way we breathe. Have you noticed you’ve had ‘snow-breath’ at all this winter? This is our body humidifying the dry air and heating it up to our body temperature, and can lead to us losing between 1 and 2 litres of water a day just through evaporation from the lungs. So, if you’re spending time outdoors – make sure you keep up with drinking water to compensate for your body having to work harder to humidify the air you breathe and warm it up too.
If you’re indoors, the cosy hot air coming from the heat pump can lower indoor humidity, which means that the humidity from our skin and breath is lost to the dry air, which in turn can cause a dehydrating effect on the body. You can physically see this with chapped lips, dry eyes, dry hands and irritated skin – all signs of dehydration.
When it’s colder, we tend to stop drinking as much fluid when we’re out and about, as we’re less likely to feel thirsty during colder weather. When it’s cold, dehydration can lead to hypothermia, and accelerate fatigue. So what should we do to avoid dehydration this winter? Number one – keep drinking [water]! Keep a drink bottle near you, or a big glass on your desk, and remember to sip on it throughout the day – set yourself a goal of finishing a certain amount each day. Number two – keep up with any other fluids; when it’s cold, hot drinks such a herbal teas, hot chocolates and soups will warm you as well as hydrate you too.
Be aware this winter, and keep on top of your game by keeping hydrated.