Hydration Help: Tips to Keep Employees Safe, Healthy and Productive
Due to the effects of the sweltering atmosphere outside and dryness caused by the constant flow of air conditioning inside, working in an office during the summer months can cause fatigue. But summertime isn’t the only time employers and employees should be concerned about drinking enough water to stay hydrated. Workers in construction, landscaping, laundry, factory, farm, or restaurant settings, among others, typically work in hot environments throughout the year. Studies show that even mild thirst can decrease productivity at work by as much as 10 per cent. Additionally, hand/eye coordination can weaken at just one per cent dehydration. Therefore, to prevent heat illness, it is crucial to maintain hydration planning year round.
- Employees need to know that they are at risk for dehydration. Sweating on the job causes you to lose the necessary water that the body stores. Signs of dehydration are thirst and dry mouth, and can be corrected easily by drinking fluids with electrolyte solutions.
- There are many reasons why a sports drink can be more beneficial than drinking water. Several studies have provided evidence that people will drink more of a flavored drink than an unflavored one. Also, the electrolytes (sodium and potassium) in the drink help to replace those lost in sweat. Finally, here is also evidence that consuming a drink with sodium in it stops your thirst mechanism from being switched off.
- Avoid caffeinated, carbonated, sugary beverages like soda. These beverages will cause you to urinate more, which can make you more dehydrated.
- Monitor how often you drink. By the time you feel thirsty, you are already dehydrated, so drink recommended fluids often. OSHA recommends the following fluid replacement protocol: Cool (50°-60°F) water or any cool liquid (except alcoholic beverages) should be made available to workers to encourage them to drink small amounts frequently, e.g., one cup every 20 minutes. Ample supplies of liquids should be placed close to the work area rather than relying on a water fountain to provide proper hydration.
- The industrial hydration market is a growing market as more attention is paid to the Gatorade coined term “industrial athlete.” With cut backs in crews and work demands increasing, savvy employers are keeping their staff well hydrated to keep morale and production up. Employees love Gatorade because they have a large variety of products. In addition to bottles, the company offers Gatorade powders, including G2, a low calorie option.
- Investing in your employee’s health does not have to break the bank. Companies like Armchem International, Hydration Depot a distributor of genuine wholesale Gatorade and Squincher products in high volume offer customers great value pricing. To save even more, take advantage of Early Buy Programs now through March 31. Additional discounts are available during this time, so stock up and save.