Every day millions of U.S. employees commit countless hours to ensure corporate competitiveness. On average, we work about 1,767 hours each year. That much dedication and hard work can build up a serious thirst. Yet surprisingly, over half of the people living in the U.S. are chronically dehydrated.
Dehydration and Poor Worker Performance
In a survey of 1,000 American workers, only 23 percent drank enough water while at work daily. This is a huge problem as our brains are made up of as much as 75 percent water.
Dehydration can affect individuals in the workplace just as much as world-class athletes. Research has shown that chronic dehydration significantly reduces cognitive function, negatively impacting reaction times, focus, short-term memory, and productivity.
Dehydration forces the heart to work harder than is necessary. And also contributes to a decline in brain activity that can directly compromise cognition and decision-making ability.
Hydration is a delicate matter. So much so that even a slight one to two percent loss in body water can impair cognitive performance. In comparison, a three to four percent drop in hydration contributes to a 25 percent decline in productivity.
Productivity isn't the only negative effect of poor water intake. Employee engagement is another facet of productivity. Dehydrated, and overworked, individuals are naturally less engaged at work and consequently less productive.
A three percent drop in hydration levels contributes to longer reaction times. Individuals who operate heavy machinery for a living, such as truck drivers and pilots, depend on their ability to respond to changing factors in their work environment at a moment's notice. Depending on the profession, a decline in reaction times is dangerous for the worker and the community at large.
According to the National Safety Council, the cost of work injuries in 2019 was $171 billion. Here's the breakdown:
- Productivity Losses: $53.9 billion
- Medical Expenses $35.5 billion
- Administrative Expenses of $59.7 billion
The Advantages of Good Water Intake
Employees who drink adequate water often see essential health benefits like improved brainpower, increased energy, and an uptick in the mood.
Good hydration is also associated with heart health, weight management, better digestive and gut health, fewer headaches, and a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes. These are all factors that make workers feel better physically and mentally and enable them to be more productive.
But according to Ellyn Schinke, Certified Professional Coach, taking regular breaks from working is just as important as staying hydrated. This ties into the reality that hydration can also contribute to burnout if not addressed.
"I think we have a corporate culture nowadays where the attitude is very much go, go, go. It's about working marathon hours. But the fact of the matter is that when you take a mental break, you are also allowing your brain to take a break from your work, which enhances your creativity," says Schinke.
“Sometimes a very simple way to get that break in is to just get up from your desk and get a drink more frequently. Not only does it get you moving, and not sitting, but it increases your hydration."
What can Corporations Do to Help?
About 22 percent of workers blame poor fluid intake on the unpleasant taste of water. While 36 percent of workers say, they're too busy working to get a drink of water.
Also, sometimes staying hydrated can be a struggle, especially if workers forget to drink water throughout the day.
So, what can corporations do to ensure employees maintain proper levels of hydration?
The solution is simple.
Our PÜL SmartCap makes forgetting to stay hydrated a thing of the past. The PÜL SmartCap fits any water bottle and, when used with our PÜL AI technology, you can track your water intake in real-time.
Achieve optimal effectiveness by linking the PÜL SmartCap to your iOS device, a personal hydration coach that will keep you at your optimal intake all day long.
The business world is highly competitive, and corporations need every resource available to perform well. An optimally hydrated workforce is focused, happy and productive. Therefore, corporations providing their workers with access to a natural, caffeine-free solution will tip the competitive scale in their favor.
Interview with Ellyn Schinke, CPC, NLPP
Certified Professional Coach (Burnout + Stress Management coach)
LinkedIn Profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ellyns8/
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