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Seniors, Make an Effort to Drink Water. Here’s Why 

Did you know that we get less thirsty as we age? It’s not that we need fluids less—staying hydrated is essential to good health. We simply don’t feel the sensation of thirst the way we did when we were younger. This is why many seniors get less water than they need. In fact, according to the Cleveland Clinic, “dehydration is a common cause of hospitalization among those 65 and over.”

So, if you’re a senior, it’s very important to make an effort to drink enough water.

Signs of Dehydration

If you have any of these signs, you may be dehydrated:

  • dry mouth
  • muscle cramps
  • chills
  • headache
  • fatigue
  • dark or strong-smelling urine
  • dizziness or confusion

You can become dehydrated more quickly if you have certain health conditions, like kidney disease, dementia, or diabetes. Also, medications like laxatives and “water pills” (diuretics) can increase your chance of becoming dehydrated.

Benefits of Hydration 

Staying hydrated is essential to keep our bodies healthy and working properly. Drinking water:

  • Helps us digest the foods we eat
  • Supports brain performance
  • Regulates and even stimulates metabolism
  • Stabilizes blood pressure, which can reduce the risk of falls
  • Regulates body temperature, especially when exercising or in hot weather
  • Helps with weight loss by suppressing appetite and preventing fluid retention
  • Maintains skin elasticity and reduce the appearance of wrinkles, scars, and soft lines 

 So how much water do we need? 8 glasses per day is a good goal, says The Mayo Clinic, and some experts recommend between 50 and 67 ounces. That may seem like a lot, but getting enough water each day is actually easier than you think.

Hydration Tips from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC)

Here are some tips from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC):

  • Carry a water bottle with you and refill it throughout the day.
  • Freeze some freezer safe water bottles. Take one with you for ice-cold water all day long.
  • Choose water over sugary drinks.
  • Drink water when eating out. You’ll also save money and reduce calories.
  • Serve water during meals.
  • Add a wedge of lime or lemon to your water. This can help improve the taste.
  • Eating the right foods is also a way to get water. According to the Cleveland Clinic, foods like cucumber, zucchini, and iceberg lettuce are high in water content. Making them part of your diet will help you stay hydrated.

Finally, drink tap water rather than bottled water. Tap water is good water! It is monitored and regulated by The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the Safe Drinking Water Act.  The Minnesota Department of Health says that “Tap water and bottled water generally have the same quality standards.” That means it’s difficult to justify the cost of buying bottled water, except in an emergency. Also, plastic water bottles are a big threat to the environment. According to one estimate, as many as 85% of plastic water bottles end up as waste. This is concerning because plastic water bottles take a long time to break down. As they do they release harmful chemicals into the soil and water. A reuseable water bottle will help you do your part to protect the environment.

JEVS Care at Home (JCAH) Can Help 

At JCAH we’re committed to delivering the best home care in the industry. If you or someone you love is finding it challenging to prepare food and cook meals, we can help. Contact us today for information about our services, which are available free to those who qualify.    

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