Australia may have some of the best weather in the world, but our hot, sunny climate can put the body at risk, especially when the mercury soars. Read on to find out about the four main ways that extreme heat affects your body.
Ever experienced muscle cramps when you’re working or exercising in the heat? It might be a sign that you’re dehydrated. When you sweat, you lose not only water, but electrolytes such as sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium (all of which aid chemical reactions in your muscles). An imbalance in any one of these can cause painful, involuntary cramps.
Heat Syncope and Heat exhaustion
These disorders are interrelated and occur when your body is unable to control its core temperature and circulatory demands. Dehydration often plays a role in heat syncope (or fainting) which occurs when a person loses consciousness due to low blood pressure. Heat exhaustion is also linked to dehydration and is the result of a severe fluid and salt loss which can cause your core body temperature to rise and restrict blood flow to the front of the brain.
This is the most severe of the heat-related disorders and, like heat syncope and heat exhaustion, results from the body’s inability to control its core temperature and circulatory demands. The human body has an internal temperature of around 37oC, and even slight shifts in either direction (in the case of heat stroke this is 40oC or above) can result in an array of dangerous outcomes, from widespread organ damage to death.
Without sufficient hydration, the risk of heat-related issues rises significantly. Water makes up 70% of our muscles and about 75% of our brain, so it’s not surprising that our body reacts badly when we lose too much of it! Drinking an electrolyte-replacing fluid such as HydraSafe is a great way of helping you stay safe in hot or humid conditions. Not only is it absorbed much faster than water, but it replenishes the various essential minerals your body needs in order to function at its best.