How great is this - we’re just over a month out from the Australian summer season! It’s the perfect time to go out and about, whether locally, nationally or internationally. It’s also an opportunity to spend some quality time with family and friends. However, the summer season also comes with its own risks. Summer means hotter weather, which creates sweat and results in dehydration.
Did you know that your brain function and athletic performance levels are detrimentally impacted if you’re dehydrated by 1-2%1? This can result in headaches and a sluggish gut1. In fact, you’d be surprised to know that 80% of Australians suffer from symptoms of dehydration yet most of them aren’t aware of the key symptoms2! Less than one in 10 Australians link concentration and mental impairment with dehydration even though it’s a common symptom for most2. With these statistics in mind, it’s important to know how dehydration could impact you during the summer months.
Hot Weather Conditions
You may experience sweat during hot weather. During warm days, sweat results in body fluid loss which leads to dehydration. It was also identified quite recently that, in addition to times of heavy rainfall, periods of drought can also see a higher number of gastro cases3.
Excessive Alcohol Consumption
Christmas parties are in abundance during summer and alcohol is a common component of these parties. Drinking plenty of alcohol can lead to excessive urination, so drinking under the sun can lead to a greater risk of dehydration1.
Over the Christmas and New Year period, quite a few businesses have a corporate holiday shut/close down. This provides an opportunity for employees to take a well-earned break and possibly go travelling. However, travelling also puts you at risk of dehydration.
When travelling overseas by plane, you may experience dehydration due to the low humidity levels on aircraft cabins. You may also experience travellers’ diarrhoea, which is primarily caused by the poor water quality and hygiene practices at your overseas destination4. Experiencing diarrhoea causes dehydration as you are losing body fluids. 30-70% of travellers experience travellers’ diarrhoea and it is quite common in high risk areas such as Asia, the Middle East and Africa4.
Sports and Exercise
Playing sports during the summer can quickly result in dehydration, especially if it’s taking place outside. Whether it’s cricket, rugby, swimming or tennis, any sport will take its toll. It’s especially important to look after children during this period as many of them will be involved in day-time sports. With a lot of physical activity involved, expect them to get dehydrated pretty quickly.
If you’ve been training hard throughout the year, then the warmer season would be the perfect time to show off that summer bod. But you also need to maintain it, which will involve cardio and training at the gym. As you’re exercising, be prepared to lose sweat and experience dehydration. It’s especially important to stay hydrated when exercising as dehydration reduces your performance capacity.
It’s not all fun and games during summer. There will also be many days where you’ll be working, either in a professional or personal level. Anything involving physical work can make you sweat, especially when it’s done at high intensity or under warm working conditions.
How to Rehydrate
Any of the above situations can lead to dehydration. Even though the summer period brings a lot of fun, it can also make you more susceptible to dehydration.
The ideal method of overcoming dehydration is through an oral rehydration solution which provides electrolytes. Electrolytes are important as they provide your body with energy and avoid muscle weakness. An oral rehydration solution that you should consider is BIOLyte. BIOLyte helps you to rehydrate by restoring lost electrolytes. It also contains added prebiotics and zinc to provide a faster recovery from both diarrhoea and vomiting. It’s available in a variety of tasty flavours and is convenient to carry as it’s in a sachet form. These benefits make BIOLyte an important rehydration solution to have so that you can make the most out of the summer season.
Are you ready for summer?
1. Moore, A. 2018, How to stay hydrated, The Sydney Morning Herald, <https://www.smh.com.au/lifestyle/health-and-wellness/how-to-stay-hydrated-20171219-h06x2z.html>
2. Sunshine Coast Daily 2016, 80% of Australians suffer effects of dehydration, < <https://www.sunshinecoastdaily.com.au/news/80-australians-suffers-effects-dehydration/2934133/>
3. Wiedershen, S 2018, Australia's drought could cause a spike in gastro cases, SBS, <https://www.sbs.com.au/news/australia-s-drought-could-cause-a-spike-in-gastro-cases>
4. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 2017, Managing Travelers’ Diarrhea While Traveling Abroad, Atlanta USA, <https://www.cdc.gov/features/managing-travelers-diarrhea/index.html>