Monday, March 16, 2009

Water needs to flow

Headaches are extremely common. Almost everyone will get a headache at some stage. Yet some people get them frequently and others only occasionally. Whilst there are some underlying causes of headaches such as eye strain, sinus problems, neck injuries and high blood pressure to name a few, the commonest type of headache is the “tension type headache”.

This form of headache is generally felt across the front of the head and can sometime be felt like a “band “ around the head it can last from half an hour to many days. The name implies a relationship to tension or stress.Only 50% of those with this form of headache have an identifiable stress leading to the headache.

One of the major contributors to headaches is simple to overcome. It is lack of water. The Boston study (see link) showed a correlation between rising ambient temperature and presentation to emergency rooms with headache. The study didn’t reach a conclusion as to why this occurs.

In my view the reason is people becoming slightly dehydrated. The body is 70% water and as the temperature goes up we lose more. Unless it is replaced we become “drier”. Our cells start to shrivel up like leaves. One of the first signs of dehydration is a headache so it is no surprise that with warmer weather more people get headaches.

The body needs around 35ml/kg body weight per day of water This is before exercise or it being a hot day in which case you need more. The body needs to turn over its water. Consider the difference between a river and stagnant pond. Both have water, one has movement of water the other doesn’t. Would you prefer your body (which is 70% water) to be a stagnant pond or a flowing river?

If you want to drink filtered or bottled water that’s great. However tap water will do.
Just make sure it is water.( A wedge of lemon or orange is fine to give it some flavour) Coffee, alcohol and soft drinks don’t count.

Resolve today to be the river not the stagnant pond.

Tip for the day

When you have a glass of water have a second one.

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