How to Know if You're Properly Hydrated - Thyme Is Honey

A Minnesotan currently living in Copenhagen, Denmark. Designing products that help you align your work + wellness. Visit my about page.

Hey!

i'm dani

You've arrived!

grab yourself a glass of water and stay a while, I've got some good stuff just for you.

Welcome to my little corner
of the internet.

I'm dani

Have we met yet?

You've arrived!

How to Know if You Are Properly Hydrated: the best indicator of hydration is probably not what you thought it was! by Thyme is Honey

So you wanna get hydrated, but how will you know when you finally “arrive” at hydration station?!

For a long time the general rule was that if your pee is clear, you’re hydrated. But this rule is actually a poor indicator of proper hydration. For starters, if you’re taking in plenty of fluid — even unhealthy or sugary fluid — your urine will be diluted enough to have little or no color. This does not indicate that you are properly hydrated

Eating nutrient-dense foods like beets, carrots, berries, and certain types of beans can actually cause your urine to turn all sorts of interesting colors from orange to pink or even green! This is actually a good thing, not a bad thing, and can skew your perception of “hydration” if you’re basing it on that old-school rule of “clear urine”.

Additionally, clear urine can actually be a sign that you are potentially over-hydrating, which can mean you are flushing your system unnecessarily and making it difficult for your body to absorb the nutrients you’re eating.

THE BEST SIGN OF HYDRATION

So, let’s toss that old urine rule out the window, shall we? There’s a better way to tell if you’re properly hydrated and, not surprisingly, it also has to do with your urine. It goes like this:

A person who is properly hydrated should urinate at least every 2.5-3 hours, with a steady stream lasting at least 15-25 seconds.

And, if you are also consuming a nutrient-dense diet, that urine will likely have a bit of color to it. It should be light yellow, like a slightly watered-down lemonade (although as mentioned previously, certain foods, vitamins, and supplements could cause different hues!).

IS THE WATER ABSORBING?

And while the frequency and duration of your bathroom breaks are an excellent way to tell if you’re hydrated and taking in enough fluids, paying attention to improvements in your cognitive function and mood state is the best way to determine if the water you’re consuming is being absorbed.

And this brings us to another “wive’s tale” about hydration: you’ll know you need to drink water when you feel thirsty. The truth is, if your brain is signaling thirst, you are already suffering some of the side effects of mild dehydration. The first signs are brain fog, fatigue, and slow thinking.

If you are hydrating properly, your entire fascial system will be soaked with water, allowing your brain’s messages to transmit faster (water transmits electricity and our brain’s message are electric signals!), your cellular waste to be cleared out more quickly, and all of your joints and tissues to be operating effectively thanks to proper lubrication. While I have a long list of signs of dehydration, I also want to provide you with a list of signs of proper hydration:

  • Quick thinking and ability to comprehend complex information or problems
  • Fast reaction times
  • Ability to control moods and emotional responses
  • Ability to concentrate for at least 25-30 minutes at a time
  • Ample energy and motivation

It’s entirely possible to drink plenty of water and be physically hydrated, but not be absorbing enough of that hydration to experience the cognitive benefits listed above. To learn more about how to hydrate properly check out my post about Optimum Hydration.

PEEING TOO FREQUENTLY

You might find that you pee significantly more than that, which is also perfectly normal, but understandably some people feel that this is a nuisance, which it certainly can be depending on your profession and schedule! However, here are a few additional things to keep in mind:

  1. We are meant to do focused work in blocks of no more than 25 or 30 minutes. So if needing to use the bathroom feels like a disruption to your work, remind yourself of that and try the Pomodoro Technique (25 minutes of highly-focused work followed by a 5-minute break. Try the FocusKeeper app, I love it!).
  2. We are not meant to be sedentary. We need to get up and move regularly. It is vital to our health, and ensuring that you get up to move at least every hour is one of the most impactful changes we can have on our long-term health. Consider being properly hydrated as a built-in way to ensure you’re never sedentary for too long — cuz you’ll hafta pee!
  3. Learn how to “front and backload” your hydration. This is great if you’re in a profession that makes frequent bathroom breaks hard (like a teacher, doctor, or truck driver). This method requires drinking more water at the beginning and ends of your shift and using deeply-absorbing beverages such as my Hydration Potion to help your body retain your hydration longer.
  4. Consider that your frequent urination could be a sign of anxiety. Frequent urination can be a sign of several health concerns, including kidney issues, but it can also be a side effect of anxiety. Even mild anxiety, stress, or tension can cause us to tense our muscles which can put pressure on our bladder and result in a subtle but persistent feeling of needing to urinate. Something to consider!

It’s also important to note that hydration isn’t about how many ounces of water you guzzle, it’s about how much water your body absorbs. If you feel like you urinate too frequently, it could be because you are consuming plenty of fluid, but not absorbing it into your body. Proper absorption of water requires a combination of water, fiber, and electrolytes along with movement to help the hydration disperse throughout all the tissue in your body. To learn more about this see my post about Optimum Hydration or check The Hydration Checklist, my 14-day online course that will help you start hydrating properly!

How to Know if You’re Properly Hydrated

I've got a course for that.

Have you ever thought about designing your own planner?!

let's go!

I gotta ask...

I gotta ask...

Start taking better photos instantly.

In a former life I was a social media strategist and content creator for health and beauty brands. I know the value of being able to get great images yourself. This eBook has all my best tips, just for you!

get the free ebook!

i put all my best secrets into this free ebook!

the daily page

How do I get it all done? Simple. I fill out The Daily Page, my secret weapon for aligning my work + wellness.

It is now available as a spiral-bound planner, notepad, instant digital download, or planner for the Goodnotes app.

Learn more

click below for my trip itineraries.

I love traveling by water as much as I love drinking it.

plan your trip

Adventure time!

Adventure time!

meet dani

follow me on instagram

check out my etsy shop

take $20 off your first pair

Rothy's Shoes

three reasons to love

1. They are incredibly comfortable and are practically the only shoes I wear for life + travel!
2. They are created from plastic water bottles and help clean up our planet.
3. They are machine washable!

see all my favorite things

My favorite skincare, shampoo, and all the services I use for my business. Click below to check them all out!

Velkommen! I'm Dani, a small-town Minnesota gal living in Copenhagen, Denmark. I like productivity, hydration, and my dog. What about you?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *