In the heat of summer, there is no avoiding the fact that drinking water is necessary to protect your health but in winter it is all too easy not to give a second thought to staying hydrated.

Yet really you should. Dehydration can be a severe problem in the cold dry air of winter just as it can be in the summer.

A major problem with winter dehydration is that people are often unaware that they are becoming dehydrated.

While hot weather leaves the skin irritatingly sweaty, a sure sign that you need to replenish lost fluids, cold weather can see sweat immediately turn to vapour [1].

Swaddled up in layers of warm clothes to keep the cold at bay it is very easy to become hot, especially if taking part in sports such as skiing or just hiking in the hills. If you are unaware that you are sweating, a major tell-tale sign to drink more water is missing.

Does the body have to work harder in cold air?

Cold weather can have different effects on the body one is that it makes some people urinate more frequently, meaning that they also lose fluids more rapidly.

In very cold weather blood vessels constrict [2] as the body works to maintain a core temperature, reducing the blood flow which in turn reduces heat loss. The constriction of blood vessels can increase your need to go to the toilet as the kidneys get rid of fluid to tackle raised blood pressure [3]. Losing fluid in this way will obviously impact hydration while to support the body working harder it is important to maintain a good balance of fluids.

When breathing cold, dry air the body also loses more fluid, again increasing the risk of winter dehydration [4].

Spotting the signs of winter dehydration

As we are far less likely to recognise thirst [5] in the colder months it is important to look for and quickly recognise, the initial signs of dehydration.

These include:

  • Dark urine
  • Fatigue
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Dry skin

While the initial signs of dehydration may not be obvious through thirst and sweating, regularly drinking water can help to prevent winter dehydration becoming an issue.

Drink water regularly throughout the day aiming to drink the recommended 6-8 glasses. Avoid excessive amounts of caffeine and alcohol as these can act as diuretics - although if you want a hot drink to warm you up, fruit and herbal teas made with filtered water are an excellent choice. Just as in summer, carry water with you throughout the day and choose a drink that you enjoy.

Enjoy the taste of Doulton filtered water

Filtered water that enjoys an improved taste and odour is an excellent choice to make sure you remain hydrated throughout the winter and all year round. And with the Doulton Taste water bottle, you can make sure that you have access to quality water wherever you are.

Doulton Water Filters makes a range of all-natural ceramic water filters to provide excellent quality water on tap. Discover more about Doulton and find the filter that is right for you.

Daniel Berko