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Fatigue Caused by ... Dehydration?
Old 12-09-2019, 07:32 PM   #1
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Fatigue Caused by ... Dehydration?

Now and then, perhaps on average once a week, I feel really tired. This has been going on for many years, but the fatigue is greater the older I get.

It's the kind of thing that I'm fine if I can just sit and watch TV, but I don't feel like getting up and doing something. It's as if I need a good night's sleep or a hefty meal.

I've told the doc about it, and she did some tests, but our conclusion was just that I'm getting old.

I was especially tired during the recent power outage.

After consulting Dr. Marcus Webly, I'm wondering if this could be caused by dehydration.
As you age, your body's fluid reserve becomes smaller, your ability to conserve water is reduced and your thirst sense becomes less acute.
I'm testing this by drinking more water. I considered testing by purposely not drinking, but decided against it.

Your thoughts?
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Old 12-09-2019, 08:07 PM   #2
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Dehydration is a nasty thing. They say to test your urine color, sometimes I forget. I've had heat stroke many years ago and that wasn't any fun, but I was a kid.

Couple years ago we went on a hike above 8k and I somehow deprived myself of fluids for a while. I was in tachycardia and felt exhausted for a couple days. I definitely wouldn't intentionally dehydrate myself, ever.
Could dehydration cause exhaustion, sure.
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Old 12-09-2019, 08:31 PM   #3
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Good idea, Al. DW is very sensitive to dehydration, and it can leave you fatigued. We found this out in New Mexico due to the altitude.
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Old 12-09-2019, 08:43 PM   #4
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Drink more water.
Your pee should be very light yellow.
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Old 12-09-2019, 08:47 PM   #5
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Having dehydration problems, too. Have to keep pushing water. Dehydration may not be the only problem, but it is probably a strong component.
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Old 12-09-2019, 08:50 PM   #6
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You know the tip of eight 8 oz glasses of water a day? If I don't double that every day, I feel dehydrated.

Along with getting hydrated, for breakfast I load up on fruits (a whole banana, orange, avocado) along with the usual turkey bacon and eggs and toast. The fruits give me a good boost of energy. Much better than a bowl of Lucky Charms.
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Old 12-09-2019, 08:53 PM   #7
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Dehydration can definitely lower your blood pressure. A few years back, I was sleeping with an electric blanket set on a high temperature and it dehydrated me enough so that I passed out when I stood up. This happened twice. I got rid of the blanket and it never happened again.
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Old 12-09-2019, 09:48 PM   #8
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I had trouble getting my dad to drink enough fluids until I discovered Propel, made by Gatoraide. He loves the stuff and now I'm hooked on it too. Both our doctors approve. I had not been drinking enough water prior that my blood tests were showing stress to my kidneys. Black Cheery is our flavor of choice.
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Old 12-09-2019, 10:12 PM   #9
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I suppose that dehydration can (at least in part) cause fatigue. On long hikes, bike rides, and runs, I get more fatigue if I'm not drinking enough water. And the fatigue seems to dissipate shortly after drinking more water.
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Old 12-10-2019, 07:19 AM   #10
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Could very well be. I’ve been full blown dehydrated a few times, and it’s debilitating beyond fatigue. The only cure is lots of water and you’re out of commission for several hours. Headaches always accompanied dehydration for me, might be a tell for the OP? I suppose there are more subtle levels of partial dehydration, might be what’s going on with the OP. Like everyone says, drink more water than you want and see if the fatigue abates. Good luck.
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Old 12-10-2019, 07:29 AM   #11
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I've had bad dehydration twice- once on a long bike ride when I didn't make enough stops, and once in India after a workout in a room that had open doors but was all windows- no A/C, no fan.

I made it worse the second time by more water thinking that would fix it; in retrospect I was diluting whatever electrolytes I had left and making things worse. The guide gave me a packet of electrolyte powder (labeled mostly in Hindi!) and I dissolved it in a bottle of water and drank it. Magic. I now keep a stash around, especially for when I'm gardening in hot weather. The brand is LiquidIV and I got it at Costco.

And yes, fatigue was the major symptom in both cases. In India I was swimming in the pool and realized I was short of breath and had no energy.

Don't mess with dehydration. This is an extreme case but when I was in Costa Rica I saw an article in the local paper about the high number of men in their 40s and 50s with kidney failure- they'd been working outdoors in construction all their lives and had gotten dehydrated too many times.
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Old 12-10-2019, 07:34 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronstar View Post
I suppose that dehydration can (at least in part) cause fatigue. On long hikes, bike rides, and runs, I get more fatigue if I'm not drinking enough water. And the fatigue seems to dissipate shortly after drinking more water.
Back in my long bike-touring days, I quickly learned to keep drinking water all day, as much as I could stand (2-5 gallons a day on the bike) or suffer the consequences - general weakness, fuzzy headedness, or worse. Recovery could take a whole night of continuing to drink all I could stand to get ready for the next day.
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Old 12-10-2019, 07:42 AM   #13
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I was working in KL and was alone at the weekend at a Holiday Inn. I went for a walk with the mad dogs. I discovered that the walk entailed going around a hilltop. Fortunately, there were convenience stores enroute so I coul get AC and water.

When I returned to my room, I was dizzy in a deep cold sweat with severe chest cramps. I sat in the dark for 2 hours and it passed. Now I always mix water with electrolytes. White urine is a necessary but insufficient condition because it flushes electrolytes from your system

DW experienced this in Mexico. She drank tons of water only to discover after admission to emergency that the electrolytes were one third of the minimum needed!
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Fatigue Caused by ... Dehydration?
Old 12-10-2019, 07:49 AM   #14
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Fatigue Caused by ... Dehydration?

Ive used Liquid IV and keep some powder packets in the pantry. Id been drinking a lot of seltzer water (intentionally) and learned my electrolytes were down (as mentioned by others above). Lately Ive been drinking Gatorade G Zero (zero sugar) and like it.
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Old 12-10-2019, 07:51 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by CyclingInvestor View Post
Back in my long bike-touring days, I quickly learned to keep drinking water all day, as much as I could stand (2-5 gallons a day on the bike) or suffer the consequences - general weakness, fuzzy headedness, or worse. Recovery could take a whole night of continuing to drink all I could stand to get ready for the next day.
Yep - very important to drink plenty of fluids before starting lengthy exercise and keep doing so through the whole workout.
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Old 12-10-2019, 09:39 AM   #16
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Unfortunately this happens to me on occasion. Actually yesterday. Then I just realize how little liquid I've consumed and I'll work to catch up. The fatigue generally passes for me.
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Old 12-10-2019, 10:07 AM   #17
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Originally Posted by davebarnes View Post
Drink more water.
Your pee should be very light yellow.
I have compromised kidneys. My Nephrologist insists I check the color of my urine, every time. If it's slightly dark, brownish rather than a light lemonade color...drink water. I carry around water everywhere. I drink water during the night, so I don't wake up dehydrated. Sure BR brakes are a pain but dehydration is much worse.

We were at Arches National Park in Utah. Huge signs everywhere "Drink Water". So many people walking around, taking hikes in the rocks with no water. We had 2 cases of water in our SUV. A young girl came stumbling up to my SIL and me. Confused and slurring her words. One might think she's drunk. I knew right away she was severely dehydrated. I forced her to stand there and drink a couple of bottles of water and poured one over her head.
This brings me to water shortages and water quality, but I won't go there
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Old 12-10-2019, 10:16 AM   #18
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In additional to what others have said, it is important to keep hydrated even when doing things in cold weather, where you might not feel as thirsty. I have been golf lately in 40 degree weather, walking the course, and have to be sure that I keep drinking water and gatorade even though I may not feel thirsty. Otherwise a sudden onset of fatigue might hit me.

Also, there have been times I had had the same "sit out the couch and do not feel like moving" feeling, but it always seems to correlate with lack of sleep the night before. If I have gotten less than 6 hours of sleep it is sure bet for that to happen.
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Old 12-10-2019, 10:28 AM   #19
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I read this article last month about the best drink for hydration: https://www.cnn.com/2019/09/25/healt...ess/index.html

Quote:
... plain H20 isn't the most hydrating beverage around, according to a study from Scotland's St. Andrews University that compared the hydration responses of several different drinks.
The researchers found that while water -- both still and sparkling --does a pretty good job of quickly hydrating the body, beverages with a little bit of sugar, fat or protein do an even better job of keeping us hydrated for longer.
Here is a link to the study the CNN article refers to, also interesting but more technical--it really is looking at what works best for staying hydrated vs relieving dehydration, perhaps more relevant to not becoming fatigued: https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/103/3/717/4564598
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Old 12-10-2019, 10:40 AM   #20
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Thanks for that article! I always add a 1 or 2 oz of apple juice or lime juice (full sugar) to 16-18 oz of clear water and drink over an hour of mulling through this forum.
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