A recent study carried out in the US showed that dehydration might affect your brain, negatively impacting the cognitive function. The researchers also said that intense working out in the summer heat is leading to the same effect if not drinking enough water to refill the depleted body fluids resources.
The review, carried out by the Georgia Institute of Technology, in the US, has been made by meta-analyzing more than 30 studies conducted on approximately 420 subjects, concentrating on the adverse effects of dehydration on the cognitive function.
After thoroughly reviewing the studies’ results, the scientists from the Georgia Institute of Technology observed that not drinking enough water, especially during intense physical activity session or during dog-days, is affecting attention, problem-solving, and coordination.
Also, reflexes and the ability to react fast reduced.
Dehydration might affect your brain, negatively impacting the cognitive function
“The simplest reaction time tasks were least impacted, even as dehydration got worse, but tasks that require attention were quite impacted,” explained Mindy Millard-Stafford, the study’s leading author.
“Maintaining focus in a long meeting, driving a car, a monotonous job in a hot factory that requires you to stay alert, are some of them. Higher-order functions like doing math or applying logic also dropped off,” Millard-Stafford added.
According to the reviewed studies, the most severe cognitive impairment occurs at above 2% of body mass loss due to dehydration.
“There’s already a lot of quantitative documentation that if you lose 2% in water, it affects physical abilities like muscle endurance or sports tasks, and your ability to regulate your body temperature,” explained the researcher.
According to the recent meta-analysis, water is a critical nutrient for the body to function correctly, but you shouldn’t exaggerate with drinking water because it might lead to overhydration with dilutes the blood and could cause the brain to swell, a condition that might be lethal.