If you're doing everything right—eating well, sleeping enough, managing stress—and you still feel fatigued, irritable, or unfocused, you could be under-hydrating. Continuing to skimp on water can make the effects worse, but certain strategies will help you rehydrate ASAP.
Add a pinch of sea salt and a squeeze of lemon juice to your next glass of water, says Dana Cohen, MD, New York City-based physician and coauthor of Quench. Both ingredients are full of electrolytes and minerals that speed hydration.
Another smart pairing, says Matt Berenc, director of education at the Equinox Fitness Training Institute in Beverly Hills: water plus movement. Your tissues absorb more fluids while they're working than they do when you're sitting still. He recommends sipping your spiked water, waiting 10 to 15 minutes, then walking a flight of stairs or a lap around the office.
Surprisingly, sleep is high on the list of dehydrating activities, adds John Sherwin, New York City-based cofounder of Hydrant. It's always smart to use the above techniques in the morning.
The bottom line:
Chronic dehydration can lead to long-term effects that impact your fitness, productivity, and mood. In your regular day-to-day, Berenc recommends drinking at least eight ounces of water every hour or two.