T Nation

Too Much Water?

Hi everyone,

What do you guys think of this:

http://msn.foxsports.com/other/story/3540424?GT1=6428

Hello. This is my first post though I have been lurking for quite some time. I guess this is the first time I actually felt I had a base of knowledge to contribute!

Anyways, hyponatremia can be a serious condition specially with soldiers and athletes. However the article included too much sports drink as a cause. Sports drinks cannot cause this condition, because they actually contain salts and sugars. You will actually become physically ill from the additives in sports drinks before you take in enough to become hyponatremic. Hyponatremia is easily prevented by having a snack along with your water intake.

Sean

Hey dude welcome to the Nation!

That’s what I initially thought…

First, they say that too much water diluting the salts can cause the problem.

But then they said fluid intake… which as you said, probably means sports drinks, which contain electrolytes etc…

Hmmm

How much is TOO much?

Thanks for the welcome.

Right in the article they state: “serious fluid and salt imbalance from drinking too much water or sports drinks.”

As for how much is too much? I think its pretty much based on the individual. I do know that I attended a class where we forced hyponatremia. Students took 1 liter of fluid either IV or orally every 1/2 hour for 4 hours without any food intake of any kind. The end result was everyone felt like hell and knew first hand signs and symptoms of hyponatremia.

AKA “Water Intoxication”…water intake induced Water Intoxication with secondary Hyponatremia is not common. The more common causes of hyponatremia are vomiting/diarrhea, severe perspiration as seen in athletes like marathon runners, etc., certain medical conditions and certain medications.

In my line of work its a little more common. Forced water intake during training and limited time for meals sometimes results in mild hyponatremia…but dehydration is still much more common.

Thank you for educating me…a bit of naivete on my part.
aloha!!!

[quote]sjoconn wrote:
In my line of work its a little more common. Forced water intake during training and limited time for meals sometimes results in mild hyponatremia…but dehydration is still much more common.[/quote]

If this is true a lot of bodybuilders would have this problem. The common way we flush water out of our system is by drinking a ton of water (3 gallons) in a day with very little amounts of sodium. Yet I have never heard of this problem until now. I personally have drank over 2 gallons in 6 hours with very little sodium with no problems.

Thankyou Chinadoll, I was unaware that certain medications could lead to this condition as well. I saw on your profile you are an emergency nurse. I would be very interested to hear more input from you and if youve seen any cases.

Mostly, from my standpoint, hyponatremia has been a contributing factor to something else rather than the cause for seeking medical treatment. Such as doing long range movements by foot while competing against a clock. Food intake is minimal at best, but water intake is heavy as is perspiration. In this instance when a person gets hyponatremic it prevents the body from regulating its temp. so the actual cause for seeking medical attention is heat injury. I hope my rambling made sense anyway.
Sean

[quote]Thad wrote:
If this is true a lot of bodybuilders would have this problem. The common way we flush water out of our system is by drinking a ton of water (3 gallons) in a day with very little amounts of sodium. Yet I have never heard of this problem until now. I personally have drank over 2 gallons in 6 hours with very little sodium with no problems.[/quote]

Except that soldiers and endurance athletes are also sweating a great deal more than bodybuilders. So, the sodium and other electrolytes are lost via sweat and lots of water (with no electrolytes) is replacing it. Probably not an issue that would affect bodybuilders the same.

Kuz