Is it okay to drink soda

The optimal thirst quencher

Tips on adequate hydration

Important to know: Thirst is an alarm signal of the body and should not arise in the first place through regular drinking.

Why is it important to drink regularly? Which drinks are the best to quench thirst? What functions does water perform in the body? Can you also drink "too much"? What happens if you are dehydrated? We provide answers to vital questions about drinking.

Why does our body need fluids?

In an average human life, around 65,000 liters of water flow through the body. Most people only take a drink when the lack of fluids is already noticeable in the form of thirst. The feeling of thirst occurs only when there is a pronounced disproportion between water and salt in the organism. With a water shortage of around 3% of the body weight, the thirst is quite clear. With the desire for fluids, the body already reports an urgent deficit in the body's "water reservoir" (technical term: dehydration). A warning sign that we often pay far too little heed to.

Drinking enough is essential. Our body consists of 60% water, and infants even 70%. Our head consists of 80-85% water. There is a cushion of fluid between the brain and the top of the skull. If we drink too little or if we remove water from the body through alcoholic beverages, the brain presses against the skull with the result that we have headaches. So water fulfills many functions in the body.

Water is a component of cells and body fluids, transports nutrients and breakdown products and regulates body temperature. Water is constantly lost through the kidneys, when sweating and when breathing, which has to be replaced regularly. Drinking can be so easy, it's just a matter of habit.

Which drinks are the best to quench thirst?

Water is the ideal thirst quencher and has no calories. Just consuming a daily amount of water consumes 200 calories. On the other hand, lemonades usually consist only of sugar, they are pure luxury foods. Carbohydrates ingested with drinks are broken down into glucose (grape sugar) during digestion and cause the blood sugar level to rise. How fast and how much the blood sugar rises depends, among other things, on the type of carbohydrates.

Avoid single and double sugars

Nutritional labeling: Here you can see how much sugar your drink has

The nutritional labeling provides information about this: With carbohydrates, as they are indicated in the nutritional table, all carbohydrates that can be digested by humans are meant. They are not bad per se, but important suppliers of energy. Certain cells, such as brain cells or red blood cells, are dependent on the carbohydrate glucose as an energy supplier. But carbohydrates are converted into fat if they are consumed in excess; the result, we're gaining weight!

Carbohydrates include single, double and multiple sugars as well as sugar alcohols. The nutritional table does not tell whether it is added sugar or naturally contained sugar. It is therefore worth taking a look at the list of ingredients. Added sugar must be listed there and is hidden behind terms such as sucrose, dextrose, fructose syrup, maltose or dextrin. Added single and double sugars should be avoided. These are particularly found in sweets, sugary drinks, pastries and finished products.

Simple formula to illustrate the sugar content

Mineral water vs lemonade: so much sugar is in it

A Lump sugar has 3 grams. We shouldn't be more than 60 grams per day Absorb sugar. That corresponds to about 20 sugar cubes. Half a liter of cola or a can of Red Bull would almost have reached this amount. Anyone who then consumes other things, such as sweets or fast food, increases their sugar consumption many times over. Due to a lack of exercise, we cannot burn the sugar. It is deposited on the hips, buttocks and above all - which is much more dangerous - in the vessels. Like a calcified water pipe, our blood vessels constrict over time. As a result, the heart has to exert more pressure to pump the blood through the 'calcified' vessels to the important organs. Elevated blood pressure is just a consequence, followed by diabetes.

Why do we perceive water to be "bland" in terms of taste?

Water is the ideal thirst quencher. But for many, water just tastes too bland. This is because your taste receptors on your tongue have got used to the excessive consumption of sugar. You can reset your tongue to its normal state again: Start with injected fruit juices (e.g. grape or pear) or unsweetened herbal teas if you want a variety of tastes. Gradually increase the amount of water. You will notice that after a short time the gustatory system has got used to the detection of less flavorful substances and you suddenly find lemonades to be far too sweet. Many also add a dash of lemon to the water to freshen up the taste. Mint leaves are also a good addition.

Tips for the correct drinking behavior

Whether tap water, mild mineral water, soda water or table water, none of them have any calories. Basically: Our intestines can only absorb approx. 0.2 liters of water per quarter of an hour; this is roughly equivalent to a coffee cup.

In the cold season, when the air in the heated rooms dries out the mucous membranes, we drink a lot. In summer, we often make up for the fluid loss caused by sweating with ice-cold drinks. But be careful, the organism has to equalize the body temperature again. The energy required for this warms up the body and you start sweating again.

Put the water in front of your nose

Place a water bottle in a visible place at work or at home. When you see the water, you will drink it too. Over time, it becomes a habit. Drinking water regularly also prevents food cravings. This way you can avoid consuming unnecessary calorie bombs like chocolate bars or snacks.

What happens if i don't drink enough?

Older people in particular can become life-threatening and dehydrated.

Non-carbonated drinking water prevents possible creeping dehydration of our body. Even a fluid deficit of 1-2% percent of body weight causes mucous membranes to dry out. The secretion and concentration of saliva decrease and toxins form in the body fluid. This process is felt most quickly in the mouth and throat, usually through a burning sensation and subsequently in the form of inflammation. The susceptibility to viral infections increases. The metabolic end products can no longer be removed from the body cells - the body poisons itself.

As a result, the blood vessels constrict and blood pressure increases. The small amount of water must now be pressed into the cells with increased pressure. This compensation only works well for a limited period of time; long-term consequences are to be expected. A lack of fluids also increases the risk of kidney stone disease and urinary tract infections. A water loss of more than 20 percent threatens life.

Do the skin fold test!

The skin fold test is ideal for checking for water shortages in the body. Pick up a fold of skin on the back of your hand with your thumb and forefinger and lift it up slightly. If this skin fold does not disappear immediately after letting go, but if it stays a little longer, you are dehydrated and dehydrated.

What if i drink too much?

Too much liquid on the one hand burdens the cardiovascular system and can be fatal. The warning applies primarily to marathon runners and endurance athletes. There is a rapid change in the sodium balance. With 2 liters of water, the body needs about 3 grams of salt. Too much fluid flushes out minerals, the lack of salt not only causes muscle cramps, but also the cells of the brain swell and disturbances of consciousness and even loss of consciousness follow.

Too much liquid is also harmful in the case of respiratory infections. If you have bronchitis and pneumonia, you should be wary of large amounts of tea. When the lower airways are inflamed, the body makes plenty of vasopressin, a hormone that stores water. If you also drink large quantities, this can lead to fluid overload and hyponatremia *.

*) The electrolyte disorder hyponatremia describes a too low sodium concentration in the blood serum.

Recommended daily intake of water

Under normal conditions (no physical exertion) a person needs a total of 35 to 40 milliliters of water per kilogram of body weight. This means that with a body weight of 50 kg 2 liters of water per day, with 75 kg 2 ½ liters and with 100 kg 3 liters.

Men need more than women because they are heavier and sweat more. A stressed person is thirstier than a relaxed one. Diet also plays a role: Vegetarians who love fruit and vegetables need less fluids than those who mostly eat bread and meat.

If there is little food consumption (e.g. when dieting or fasting), the water contained in solid foods is missing. More water has to be added. During physical exertion, e.g. exercising, the daily water requirement can reach 3 to 4 times as much.

The beneficial effects of water

Which diseases can be treated with water:

Where does our drinking water come from?

Precipitation throughout Austria (source: wasserwerk.at)

In many regions of the world, the supply of clean water that can be drunk without treatment is becoming increasingly scarce. There are many reasons for this: pollution from industry, fertilizers and sewage, lifestyle, climate change and population growth. In comparison, Austria is a water-rich country. However, rain and other precipitation fall unevenly over time and region. Areas along the main Alpine ridge are characterized by high levels of precipitation all year round. In parts of western Austria, for example, the annual mean fall is more than 2,500 mm, while in northeastern Austria it is only 600 mm or less.

How much drinking water do we use?

Technical progress makes it possible today to record and use Austria's water reserves ever more precisely. Almost 90 percent of the population in Austria is supplied with public water. The total annual water supply from precipitation and tributaries minus evaporation is around 83 billion m³. That corresponds to a thousand times the amount of water in the Wörthersee. Austria consumes three percent: almost two thirds use industry and only 35 percent are used for drinking water supply. Every Austrian uses 130 liters of drinking water every day.

Climate forecast for Austria

Austria's glaciers are melting rapidly due to climate change.

In winter there will be more precipitation in the form of rain and less in the form of snow, so that less groundwater reserves can be built up. The glaciers will continue to decline. The south, especially Carinthia and Eastern Styria, will almost always be affected by a decrease in precipitation. The 2000 EU Water Framework Directive stipulates that member states must use water more efficiently.