Water is super important for good health and, really, it helps with everything. Since about 60% of the human body is actually water, it needs to maintain hydration levels to fuel cells and keep the brain and body functioning.
You can stay hydrated by drinking water and certain foods can also help you stay hydrated, especially those with a high water content, such as cucumbers, watermelon, bell peppers and tomatoes. However, many of us aren't drinking nearly enough daily and are even drinking dehydrating sources, like sugar-sweetened beverages and booze, which can strip the body of hydration too.
So, what exactly happens to your body if you don't drink enough? Here are 10 not-so-pleasant side effects you might experience.
Read more: How Water and Health Are Connected
1. You Might Feel Low Energy
When dehydrated, you might notice your energy levels plummet, as water helps keep your mind alert and the body balanced. If you're not drinking enough during the day, that afternoon slump will hit even harder, and you might feel too tired to continue on with work or make it to your evening workout. Keep a water bottle on hand to remind you to consistently drink throughout the day.
2. You May Experience Mental Fog
Your brain needs water (our brain is about 80% water), and drinking enough keeps you mentally sharp, even long-term. A study in the journal Nutrients found that drinking water boosts brain health and prevents memory decline and mental drowsiness. If you're feeling foggy and are spacing out, chug some water and see if it helps.
3. It Might Increase Your Risk of Stroke
Water is good for your ticker, too. According to a study in BMC Cardiovascular Disorders, being dehydrated can raise risk of strokes and prolong recovery time, if you've had one. So, to keep your heart in tip-top-shape, pay attention to how much you're drinking. If your pee is dark yellow or you feel faint, drin