Proper hydration is one of the best and easiest things you can do to promote good health. Yet, many people become dehydrated and don’t even know it. Intoxication or working out, in particular, can cause rapid dehydration that should be remedied as soon as possible.
Read on to learn more about the causes of dehydration and how proper hydration with coconut water will benefit your body.
- What Causes a Hangover?
- Why is Hydration Important?
- How Can Coconut Water Help Dehydration?
What Causes a Hangover?
A hangover occurs due to dehydration. When you consume alcohol, your body quickly metabolizes it, and it enters your bloodstream. Alcohol causes your pituitary gland to stop the production of vasopressin.
Vasopressin is an anti-diuretic hormone, and without it, your body expels the majority of liquids you consume, rather than allowing your organs to absorb them. In fact, drinking 250 ml of alcohol can cause your body to expel about 800 ml of liquid, thereby making you become dehydrated quickly.
Your body needs these expelled liquids contain vital electrolytes. These electrolytes include potassium and sodium, among others, and the loss of these nutrients disturbs muscle, nerve, and overall cellular function. In addition, a depletion of potassium and sodium can result in headaches, nausea, and other symptoms associated with a hangover.
In addition to your body getting rid of essential electrolytes and water, glycogen in your liver also breaks down due to alcohol consumption. Glycogen is an essential carbohydrate that, while you drink alcohol, is turned into glucose and expelled from your body. The absence of glycogen causes fatigue and weakness associated with a hangover.
Fatigue is also, in part, due to your body’s increased production of glutamine after drinking alcohol. Glutamine decreases your ability to sleep deeply, so even if you sleep for several hours after intoxication, you will probably still wake up tired.
Hangover dehydration also causes your thirsty organs to steal water from your brain. This causes your brain to decrease in size, making your brain’s membranes tighten and pull, causing additional head pain during a hangover.
A hangover can be made worse if you’re dehydrated prior to drinking, if you drink on an empty stomach, or if you engage in physical activities while drinking.
That said, why does your body need to be hydrated anyways? Read on to find out.
Why is Hydration Important?
For starters, hydration is important because more than half of your body is composed of water. Yet, there’s a lot more to hydration than that.
Every cell in your body requires water to properly function. When your cells lose more water than they take in, they become dehydrated.
So while water seems simple and readily available, it’s important to actually remember to drink it, and to drink a lot of it. Even if you’re not thirsty, it’s recommended that you continue to consume water. The average person should consume about 8-10 glasses of water per day.
If you’re an athlete or experiencing dehydration due to intoxication, hangover or flu, you will need to consume even more water, especially electrolyte-enhanced water or other super hydrating alternatives like coconut water.
How Can Coconut Water Help Dehydration?
Coconut water is incredibly rich in electrolytes, particularly potassium, and sodium. When you sweat or expel too many liquids, your body loses these electrolytes and becomes dehydrated.
It’s important to maintain good hydration and replenish your electrolytes as soon as you begin to lose them. Coconut water makes it easy (and delicious) to stay hydrated.
So, coconut water is an excellent source of potassium and sodium making it an excellent drink for rehydration, but what else is good about it?
Coconut water is rich in other essential electrolytes, too, such as calcium and magnesium. Electrolytes are necessary for almost every cellular function in your body, especially proper heart, nerve, and muscle function.
Coconut water also contains lots of vitamins, particularly vitamin C and B vitamins. Vitamin C helps to boost immunity. B vitamins help to boost metabolism, and keep your digestive tract moving properly.
How does coconut water help you hydrate during a hangover? Comment below!