The Importance of Adequate Hydration in an Athlete's Diet.

Essay by lunau_77College, UndergraduateA+, May 2003

download word file, 12 pages 4.3


Fluids are often forgotten in discussions about sports nutrition. Humans can live for a prolonged period of time without macronutrient and micronutrient intake, but not without water. Water is the basic substance needed for all metabolic processes in the human body. It enables transport of other substances by the circulation and interchange or exchange of nutrients and metabolic end-products between organs and their external surroundings. When you are feeling fatigued, the cause could be as simple as dehydration. Water and adequate hydration is crucial for both general well-being and top performance, regardless of the level one is training at. This research paper will discuss the importance of proper hydration in an athlete's diet, and attempt to determine the optimal beverage to consume during physical activity.

The Importance of Adequate Hydration

Water is a basic necessity for life. Without it, life can't exist. Even when water is limited, living organisms suffer.

For athletes, not having enough water means they are unable to do their best. It can even cause serious health problems. Blood circulates like an ocean within the body. The water in blood helps carry nutrients and energy to our body cells. It also carries waste products away from our cells for excretion from our body. Water helps to regulate our body temperature, which is an important factor for us all.

Athletes have a special need for water. Participation in a sport such as track or volleyball, helps to burn a lot of food energy. Some of that unleashed energy powers muscles. However, some of that energy is released as heat. Water keeps the body from overheating. Sweating and evaporation from the skin cools the body down., but, water is also lost in the cooling process. This can be dangerous if the water is not replenished. If water levels...