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Is It Possible To Get Water Poisoning?

Is it possible to get water poisoning? YES. Drinking too much water can cause water poisoning, intoxication, or a disruption in brain function. This occurs when there is an excessive amount of water in the cells, causing them to swell. When the cells in the brain swell, pressure builds up in the brain.

Avoid Over-Hydration

We're repeatedly reminded how beneficial water is to our health and that we should drink at least two liters of water of it every day. However, many people are unaware that there are upper limits to fluid intake. Drinking too much water can be harmful to your health and even cause death.

Excessive water consumption causes a condition known as hyponatremia in the body. This is a low sodium concentration in the blood caused by excessive fluid intake. To clarify, fluid consumption includes everything from water to sports drinks and coffee.

The notion of over-hydration appears to contradict the traditional belief that a high intake is beneficial to our skin, kidneys, detoxification, and so on. While water is generally very good news, it is not always true that you can't have too much of it.

Overhydration Death

According to a press article, I read yesterday, a young man on an alternative medicine diet died from dehydration. The vegan diet recommended taking salt supplements and drinking plenty of water. However, it resulted in the young man overdosing on water and his death from cerebral oedema, or brain swelling.

This brain swelling is caused by the body's attempt to correct an electrolyte or salt imbalance. When this occurs, our body attempts to correct the problem by releasing more sodium into the bloodstream. This causes water to enter cells. If there is too much water in the cells, they may swell and burst.

Runners who run marathons

Marathon runners are also at risk of water overdosing, which is more common than you might think. A study of 488 runners conducted after the Boston Marathon found that approximately 13% had overdosed on the water to the point where their sodium levels had dropped, though only 1% of those measured were in the critical range.

In the world of running, this has resulted in many marathons and long-distance races having fewer water stops along the way. Athletes are also advised to drink while thirsty rather than staying ahead of thirst.

Cleansing Diets

Of course, for dieters and those on 'cleansing and detox diets,' this medical issue may be an issue as well. Overdosing in water can cause nausea and headaches, as well as passing out, comas, and even death. The irony is that many of the side effects of excessive water consumption are similar to those of dehydration.

Your body can only process a certain amount of water per hour, approximately 30oz. If you consistently consume more than 60oz of water per hour, you may enter the danger zone and suffer the consequences of water overdosing.

Any diet that requires you to drink an excessive amount of water is not necessarily healthy and can lead to the aforementioned issues. Drinking two to three liters of water per day is recommended for optimal hydration. Of course, this is dependent on your body weight and level of exertion.

Wrapping Up

Is it possible to get water poisoning? Yes, it’s very possible to have water poisoning if you have too much of it. Please do not interpret this as a warning to stay away from water. Water is great because it helps you lose weight and stay healthy. Instead, this is a warning that too much of anything (even water) is bad for you. 

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