Maintaining hydration is paramount, but how hydration is maintained is just as important. (…) a diet rich in processed, high-temperature-cooked food requires the consumption of several quarts of fluid a day to overcome the lack of fluid in the diet and control thirst. But drinking large amounts of water or other fluids to compensate for the lack of moisture in food is hard on the digestive system. (…)
So does everyone need to drink eight glasses of water a day? I don’t believe you should drink water if you are not thirsty. By eating a natural, whole-food diet, the body’s fluid requirements will be taken care of.
Sweat consists of water and electrolytes (electrolytes themselves consisting in several minerals). Simply replenishing water without also replenishing electrolytes can create an imbalance and even lead to a condition known as hyponatremia. Also known as water intoxication, hyponatremia can develop when a person drinks too much water. It is most common among athletes who try to properly hydrate in days prior to a race yet overdo it and flush electrolytes from the body. Milder symptoms include muscle twitches and cramping; more serious ones include heart palpitations and blacking out.