August 9, 2011

Let us look at water, H2O. A very abundant substance on earth. We are made up of between 45% and 78% water at any given time in our lives with higher volumes at younger years. This water is vital to our survival.

To understand this, I note that cholera and diarrheal illness are a major cause of death worldwide through water loss. At home the recent deaths with heat stroke and sports are another wakeup call for us as parents. These issues are easily prevented through adequate hydration. The World Health Organization publishes a recipe for rehydration as follows:

Ingredients:
•Six (6) level teaspoons of Sugar
•Half (1/2) level teaspoon of Salt
•One Litre of clean drinking or boiled water and then cooled - 5 cupfuls (each cup about 200 ml.)

Preparation Method:

•Stir the mixture till the salt and sugar dissolve.

Follow the protocols on the following links.

Check out the link to the left and also http://rehydrate.org/solutions/homemade.htm

http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/dehydration/DS00561/DSECTION=treatments-and-drugs

My rule of thumb for hydration when you are not sick is to have clear urine. If your urine is yellow, then drink more water. Athletes should drink often during games and practice. At least one 12 ounce rehydration solution with as much free water as possible is warranted on hot days and heavy workouts.

Breastfeeding mothers need to drink adequate volumes to maintain their infants hydration status. I recommend carrying water around with you all day as a reminder.

What a hot summer!

My take home point today: Think water!

Live well,

Dr. Magryta