Water cannot dehydrate you

Here’s a thing, we’re endlessly told we should be drinking more water…well, that’s not strictly true, you get water from food and lots of different types of drinks and unless you have particular needs because of age or disease or are in a particularly desiccating environment it’s actually quite hard to become clinically dehydrated. Another bit of deceived wisdom often bandied about is that certain drinks, particularly those containing caffeine and/or alcohol make you dehydrated too. But, an interesting paper in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition earlier this year has attempted to standardise a beverage hydration index (BHI). The authors of the paper hypothesised that “the postingestion diuretic response is likely to be influenced by several beverage characteristics, including the volume ingested, energy density, electrolyte content, and the presence of diuretic agents.”

However, that doesn’t seem to be what they found, debunking that particular piece of deceived wisdom. Fizzy drinks, coffee and beer do not make you dehydrated: “Cumulative urine output at 4 h after ingestion of cola, diet cola, hot tea, iced tea, coffee, lager, orange juice, sparkling water, and a sports drink were not different from the response to water ingestion.”

Fundamentally, all of those drinks are mostly water and are not quite the potent diuretics as lifestyle gurus in their lifestyle magazines and bestselling opratic books might have you believe…

Author: 雷竞技官网

Award-winning freelance science writer, author of Deceived Wisdom. Sharp-shooting photographer and wannabe rockstar.