Staying hydrated should not just be a summertime focus, it is equally important to stay hydrated during the winter months.

The standard guideline is that individuals should drink eight glasses of water each day. Below are some health benefits to staying hydrated in the winter.

Avoiding Winter Dehydration

As winter approaches, we find ourselves putting on more layers and turning up the heat in our homes. What we do not often associate with the wintertime is dehydration. Dehydration becomes much harder to notice in the winter when it is cold outside, and we are not sweating as we do in the summer months.

While you may not notice it, during the winter your body loses water in other ways, such as the water vapor from your breath while outside.

In cold weather, your body’s response to thirst is diminished, making you more vulnerable to going an extended time without drinking water.

Loss of energy

An afternoon slump or daytime fatigue may be caused by dehydration. When you become dehydrated, you begin to feel tired or sluggish. Staying hydrated ensures that you are functioning at your peak performance and that your body is functioning properly.

Cold and Flu Season

There is a spike in illnesses during the winter in part because of weakened immune systems. One of the best ways to combat the common cold is by staying hydrated. Dehydration weakens our immune systems and makes us susceptible to getting sick. Not being properly hydrated can also dry out our sinuses and leave our lungs prone to infections. Staying hydrated helps our body regulate its temperature and helps to remove toxins.

Preventing “Winter Weight”

As temperatures drop and days become darker, we often find ourselves snacking more and gaining “winter weight”. We can often mistake our thirst for hunger in the colder months. It may be what our body is craving is water. A glass of water before bed can help cutdown on unnecessary snacking late at night. Staying hydrated also helps our body to better digest meals.