Dehydration Affects Your Mood
Dehydration has long been known to
compromise physical performance.
Now, a new Tufts study provides insight
into the effects of mild dehydration on
young athletes, and possibly into the
lives of people too busy to consume
enough water daily. About 30 male and
female Tufts students were assigned to
either a “dehydration group” not given
fluids during athletics, or a control
group that was given water. Participants
weighed in before and after athletics to
assess body water loss. After athletic
activity, participants underwent cognitive
tests, which included short-term
memory and mood scales.
Researchers found that dehydration
was associated with negative mood,
including fatigue and confusion, compared
to the hydrated group. The level
of mild dehydration (losses of between
1% and 2%) experienced among study
participants is comparable to the mild
dehydration some people experience in
their daily lives from drinking insufficient
amounts of water.
Biological psychologist Kristen
D’Anci, PhD, led the study while at
Tufts’ Jean Mayer USDA Human
Nutrition Research Center on Aging.
The findings were published in the
journal Perceptual and Motor Skills.