Myths About Hydration #2
Get the truth about when, what and how much you really need to sip.
Myth: It is easy to mistake thirst for hunger.
Fact: Your body knows the difference. The thinking here is that you are apt to dive into a bag of M&M’s when what you really need is a swig of water. Reality check: Snack attacks are usually due to any number of reasons (boredom, habit, stress0 besides thirst. In fact, being thirsty make actually make you eat less during the day. You are unlikely to mix up true thirst and hunger because the sensations are not the same. They feel different and are regulated by separate mechanisms in your body. When you are low on fluids, your cell and blood volumes decrease, and you get an unpleasantly dry, tacky-feeling mouth. Hunger, on the other hand, is driven by gut hormones, nutrients, and glucose, and it is heralded by stomach rumbles and a sensation of emptiness.
Bottom Line: Look out for the thirst and hunger cues above, and drink or eat up as needed. And if what you are really feeling is boredom or stress, take a stretch break or watch some television.