Hydration Promotion

almaco-63Dehydrated employees can significantly impact a company’s overall performance and safety record. Studies show that even mild dehydration (>2% of body mass) has effects on cognitive functions like concentration, alertness and short-term memory. Dehydration can also lead to lower productivity levels and increased risk of accidents and heat-related illnesses.

Warm work environments and job duties that involve high levels of physical activity require greater fluid replacement, making it especially important for employees to be hydrated. Employers can include hydration promotion as part of a comprehensive workplace wellness and safety program, especially during hot summer months. They can educate employees about hydration assessment, signs and risks of dehydration and strategies for staying hydrated while working. Employee buy-in, however, is critical for its success. Employees need to personally commit to the habit of drinking more water, to assessing their personal hydration status and to make staying hydrated part of their personal health and wellbeing. To promote hydration in the workplace, employers can:

  • Make water readily accessible and appealing to workers (hydration stations)
  • Upgrade existing drinking fountains
  • Enhance access to bathroom facilities
  • Offer fruit-infused water at meetings and on hot days (lemons, limes, oranges, strawberries, cucumbers)
  • Distribute water bottles or re-usable glasses
  • Share tips for drinking more water

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