A lot of people are still ignorant of the side effects of drinking too much water.
We are all occupied with the thoughts of this and that health benefits to be derived from drinking water that we are now drinking way too much.
But like all things else, too much of anything is bad.
Just yesterday I wrote an article on the Side Effects of Not Drinking Water Enough In case you are among those not getting enough liquid into your system then I advice that you check it out.
On January 12, 2007 a 28-year old Californian wife and mother of three children died from drinking too much water. Her body was found in her home shortly after she took part in a water-drinking contest that was sponsored by a local radio show. Entitled “Hold Your Wee For A Wii,” the contest promoters promised a free Wii video game machine to the contestant who drank the most water without urinating.
It is estimated that the woman who died drank approximately 2 gallons of water during the contest. When she and other contestants complained of discomfort and showed visible signs of distress, they were laughed at by the promoters and even heckled.
So what are the side effects of drinking too much water? Let the listing begin.
1. Excessive Sweating
Excessive sweating has seen a lot of people go for surgery, to remove their sweat glands.
And it is the most irritation among the side effects of drinking too much water.
Hyperhidrosis is a condition characterized by abnormally increased sweating , in excess of that required for regulation of body temperature .
It is the expert opinion of some medical experts that too much water consumed is a trigger for the condition.
An opinion also shared by Professor Whiteley, an expert in hyperhidrosis.
‘One of the first things I always ask my hyperhidrosis patients is how much they drink,’ he says. ‘Invariably, because they sweat excessively, they tell me they drink a lot of water to compensate. They are surprised when I say their drinking habits could be making their sweating worse. If you drink more water than you need to, sweating is one of the ways the body will try to rid itself of the excess. My patients often discover they sweat less if they drink less water.’
Excessive sweating is therefore one of the side effects of drinking too much water.
2. Water Intoxication
You can get yourself killed if you drink way too much water than you really need.
According to DailyMail In 2008, Jacqueline Henson — a 40-year-old mother from Huddersfield, who was on a stringent weight-loss programme — died of water intoxication after drinking four litres of water in the space of a couple of hours.
‘Drinking too much water too quickly — and we’re talking litres of water here, rather than cupfuls — can play havoc with the delicate balance of salts in the body,’ says Dr Frankie Phillips, of the British Dietetic Association.
Drinking a lot of water increases the amount of water in your blood.
This water can dilute the electrolytes in your blood, especially sodium. When sodium levels fall below 135 mmol/L, it is called hyponatremia.
Sodium helps balance fluids between the inside and outside of cells.
When sodium levels drop due to excess water consumption, fluids shifts from the outside to the inside of cells, causing them to swell.
When this happens to brain cells, it can produce dangerous and potentially life-threatening effects.
It is now a common knowledge not to drink water before bedtime as it would naturally disrupt your sleep cycle.
‘When we fall asleep, our brains release ADH, anti-diuretic hormone, to slow down kidney function and stop us feeling the need to urinate during the night,’ says Professor Whitely.
‘If you drink two or three glasses of water in the evening, however, all that extra fluid working its way through your system is likely to override the effect of ADH, fill your bladder, and have you getting up in the small hours. It can then be difficult to fall back to sleep.’
4. Dangerously Increases Blood Levels
This particular one among all the side effects of drinking too much water, seems like the core of all others.
Ingesting more water than you need can increase your total blood volume. And since your blood volume exists within a closed system (your circulatory system), needlessly increasing your blood volume on a regular basis puts unnecessary burden on your heart and blood vessels.
5. Damaged Glomeruli
Your kidneys must work overtime to filter excess water out of your circulatory system. Your kidneys are not the equivalent of a pair of plumbing pipes whereby the more water you flush through your kidneys, the cleaner they become; rather, the filtration system that exists in your kidneys is composed in part by a series of specialized capillary beds called glomeruli. Your glomeruli can get damaged by unnecessary wear and tear over time, and drowning your system with large amounts of water is one of many potential causes of Glomeruli damage.
6. Cerebral Edema
Brain edema is a condition when the brain cells start swelling.
Excess fluid accumulation in the brain is called cerebral edema , which can affect the brain stem and cause central nervous system dysfunction.
Drinking too much water increases pressure inside the skull. This can cause various symptoms and even be fatal in severe cases.
7. Potassium Depletion
Drinking an excessive amount of water can lead to a potentially life threatening loss in the mineral potassium.
Nutrition professor with North Dakota State University Julie Garden-Robinson, Ph.D., states that excessive water consumption leads to a dangerous condition known as “water intoxication.” This condition can lead to urinary loss of potassium.
Too much water can lead to stomach irritation due to an imbalance between electrolytes, which are minerals in your bloodstream, and water in your body.
These are some of the side effects of drinking too much water and I hope it help’s inform your decisions when it comes to how much water to drink.