Heart failure: to prevent it, remember to hydrate yourself

Remembering to drink regularly in order to properly hydrate your body would be one of the keys to reducing the risk of heart failure according to American researchers.

It’s not just in hot weather that you have to remember to stay hydrated. Drinking (water) regularly to promote proper hydration of the body would indeed greatly reduce the risk of heart failure, according to a study by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute of Bethesda (USA). “Our study suggests that maintaining good hydration can prevent or at least slow down the alterations in the heart that lead to heart failure,” explains Dr. Natalia Dmitrieva, lead author of this study which has just been published in the european heart journal.

Why does our heart need water?

When you have heart failure, the heart cannot pump enough blood to meet the body’s normal needs. When one does not drink enough, the concentration of serum sodium increases and exceeds the 142 mmol/l. To avoid dehydration, our body tries to conserve water by activating processes that otherwise contribute to the development of heart failure. This is why Dr. Dtmtrieva recalls thatgood daily fluid intake varies 1.6 to 2.1 liters for women and 2 to 3 liters for men.

In video: 4 tips for staying hydrated

For this study, the American researchers evaluated more than 15,000 participants aged 44 to 66 at the time of recruitment and followed them until they were 70 to 90 years old. Participants were divided into 4 groups based on their average serum sodium concentration. The researchers then analyzed the proportion of people who developed heart failure and left ventricular hypertrophy at the 5th visit (25 years later). Their findings show that a higher serum sodium concentration in midlife is associated with both heart failure and left ventricular hypertrophy 25 years later.

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