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Winter Dehydration ~ [Issue 0206-3]  Wellness Weekly
 Feb 22, 2006 08:59 PST 


Even though you may not get as thirsty in cold weather as in hot, you
can still get dehydrated, specialists caution. Research conducted at
the University of New Hampshire shows increased risk for dehydration
during cold spells when people fail to drink as much as they should.
Robert Kenefick, associate professor of kinesiology, says our bodies
lose water in the winter due to respiratory fluid loss through
breathing. In addition, they work harder under the weight of extra
clothing, and sweat evaporates quickly in cold, dry air, Kenefick
points out. Fluid deficits of 3 percent to 8 percent of body mass
have been observed in individuals working in cold environments, and
dehydration is a major problem with exercise in the cold, he reports
in the journal "Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise." "Humans
do not naturally hydrate themselves properly, and they can become
very dehydrated in cold weather because there is little physiological
stimulus to drink," he cautions. Drink plenty of water, especially
when exercising or working outdoors, he advises. A good way to
monitor proper hydration is to examine urine output - the color
should be nearly clear, he says.
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