According to research, maintaining enough levels of water may be essential for living a longer, healthier life. Adults who maintain good hydration appear to be healthier, have fewer chronic diseases like heart and lung illness and live longer than those who do not get enough fluids, according to a National Institutes of Health study.
Researchers examined relationships between changes in blood sodium levels, which rise when fluid intake decreases, and a number of health markers using the information on 11,255 persons’ health collected over a 30-year period. The researchers discovered that compared to adults with serum sodium levels in the medium range, those with serum sodium levels at the higher end of the normal range were more likely to acquire chronic diseases and exhibit symptoms of advanced biological ageing.
“The results suggest that proper hydration may slow down ageing and prolong a disease-free life,” said Natalia Dmitrieva, a study author and researcher in the Laboratory of Cardiovascular Regenerative Medicine at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, part of NIH.
According to the study, the information supplied by study participants during five medical visits, the first two in their 50s and the final when they were between the ages of 70 and 90, was evaluated by researchers. People with underlying problems like obesity or high serum salt levels at baseline check-ins were excluded from the study to allow for a fair evaluation of how hydration connected with health outcomes.
The researchers next looked at the relationship between serum sodium levels and 15 health markers used to measure biological ageing. Systolic blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar were among the variables that gave information about how each person’s cardiovascular, respiratory, metabolic, renal, and immunological systems were doing.
According to the study, they also took into account variables including age, race, biological sex, smoking status, and hypertension. They discovered that persons with normal serum sodium levels over 135 to 146 milliequivalents per litre (mEq/L) were more likely to exhibit indications of biological ageing at a faster rate.
Based on indicators including lung function, inflammation, and metabolic and cardiovascular health. The risk of acquiring chronic diseases such as heart failure, stroke, atrial fibrillation, peripheral artery disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes, and dementia rose by up to 64% in persons with serum salt levels above 142 mEq/L.
On the other hand, the study found that persons with serum sodium levels between 138 and 140 mEq/L had the lowest chance of acquiring the chronic illness. The researchers noted that the results do not demonstrate a causal effect. To ascertain whether optimum hydration can encourage healthy ageing, prevent disease, and lengthen life, randomised, controlled experiments are required.
The correlations can still influence clinical practice and direct individual health behaviour, though. “The goal of providing medical guidance is to ensure patients are taking in enough fluids, while assessing factors, like medications, that may lead to fluid loss,” said Manfred Boehm, a study author and director of the Laboratory of Cardiovascular Regenerative Medicine.
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