MILAN – Are you irritated, tired and struggling to get going? Don’t cry over spilt water
– drink some! This is the advice aimed at the fairer sex by researchers at the American Society for Nutrition, authors of a new study published in the Journal of Nutrition.
THE STUDY – The researchers tested the mood, concentration and mental abilities of 25 women. Some were given enough water to remain at optimum hydration levels, whereas others were induced into a state of mild dehydration.
THE RESULTS - Mood and cognitive abilities were tested when working and resting for the groups of women in different states of hydration. For the majority of the mental tests the state of hydration had no impact on performance, but it did cause symptoms such as headaches, loss of concentration, a sense of tiredness and depression both when resting and active. The level of dehydration induced during the study was not high; it was approximately 1% under the optimum level.
RISK OF DEYHDRATION AND MYTHS – Although men weren’t included in this study, the results probably apply to them also. The study highlighted that drinking water and other non-alcoholic, caffeine-free drinks are best for combating dehydration. Another clue that means you’re getting dehydrated is the colour of your urine: if it’s dark, you need to drink more water. Whilst the old maxim of drinking eight glasses a day has been widely proven to be unfounded, this and other research shows that a good level of hydration has a positive impact on your health and well- being.