US Study Finds Poor Hydration Linked to Early Aging and Disease

    Photo: PA Wire [via Independent]

    The Facts

    • In a study published on Monday, the US National Institutes of Health found that adults who maintain good hydration appear to live longer and experience fewer chronic medical conditions. The data for the findings were gathered over 30 years.

    • The results were published in eBioMedicine, which studied data from 11,255 Black and White participants and showed that adults with increased serum sodium levels suffered worse health outcomes than those with lower levels.

    The Spin

    Narrative A

    Many studies show that increased water intake is good for one's health. However, the recommendation of eight glasses of water daily is not based on scientific facts and excludes considerations based on activity level and outdoor conditions. It would be better to publicly say that water is the best option for hydration and that other drinks should be consumed in moderation — this study should be taken with a metaphorical grain of salt.

    Narrative B

    This study proves that hydration and health are intimately linked, yet the US neglects to provide clean drinking water for many. Between 2013 and 2017, 1.1M Americans reportedly had insecure water access. Subpar housing conditions and systemic social and racial divisions have led to this crisis. We may not even understand the true scale of the problem, because the US Census Bureau tends to undercount people in rental units, homeless individuals, and people of color. More must be done to address this.

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