Those of us that have spent countless hours on the water know about dehydration. We all may understand the idea of being dehydrated but few of us can explain why we get dehydrated, how to stay properly hydrated, and what to do to ensure you don't get in trouble with a less than adequate hydration system.
Boaters and Dehydration
Dehydration, or excessive loss of bodily fluids, is a common problem in a number of athletic endeavors, and it’s often a problem that boaters experience. The average sedentary adult loses a bit over 2.5 quarts of water every day by:
Breathing. Our lungs humidify the air we inhale. When you exhale, some moisture is lost. You can see that visually on a cold day. Most of the time, we don’t see this loss and therefore underestimate its extent.
Sweat. Dogs pant to help regulate their internal temperature. We sweat. As our temperature increases, our skin emits perspiration, which is largely water but also contains sodium, potassium and other minerals (more on these later). As the sweat evaporates, it cools the skin, and the blood right under the skin. This cooled blood circulates and lowers body temperature.
Urine and fecal material. In addition to the waste products that need to be eliminated, some water is also lost.
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