Healthy Lifestyle Tips

  • FriendlyMacKenzieT

Feeling Anxious? Try Drinking More Water.

Updated: Jul 3, 2020

Something could go terribly wrong, you just can't sit still, and whatever people say, it's likely to bother you. You're feeling symptoms of anxiety. You don't want to feel this way, but it's hard to think of anything other than what you're already worried about. Do something simple that might make a big difference, drink some water.


Even light dehydration can cause an increase in cortisol, the hormone that causes you to feel stressed. Stress and anxiety and connected, and you're at an increasing risk of anxiety if you're feeling stressed for long periods of time. If you haven't been drinking enough water while you're under stress from other situations in your life, you're setting yourself up for problems. Although dehydration may not be the only stressor in your life, it's usually an easy one to address.


Photo by Alexander Dummer from Pexels

Here's the interesting part; stress can actually cause dehydration. When you're stressed from events in your life, your body starts using more water, making it easier to become dehydrated. It becomes much worse if you aren't hydrating enough, because dehydration causes stress too. Again, drinking water won't change the circumstances in your life, but it will break the water related stress cycle that might be a big contributor to your feelings of anxiety.


Drinking enough water isn't always as easy as it sounds, but you can find some ways to help yourself get more. Some people like using straws, and popular wisdom is that you'll drink more that way (I can't find a study that backs up those claims). The easy answer, in my opinion, is that if you like drinking water in a certain way, keep using it; when you like doing something you do it more often. One tip that's helped me is to use small glasses; I don't agree that 8 and 8 (8 cups of 8 ounces per day) is a good rule of thumb (everyone's hydration needs are different) but I do use 8 ounce glasses so each glass looks small instead of daunting.


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