Vaping Means Drinking More Fluids
Vaping Dehydration is a real issue vapers must deal with, especially when they first start vaping. Propylene Glycol, one of the four major ingredients of e-liquid (along with vegetable glycerin, flavoring concentrates, and nicotine) is the major cause of dehydration. It is known as a hygroscopic substance, a substance that absorbs and holds in water molecules, preventing them from being absorbed by the body. This is the reason vapers complain of being thirsty all the time, or of having dry mouth, and even the cause of dark circles under the eyes.
Usually a new Vaper, and some veteran vapers, are told to increase their water consumption. Sipping water while you vape, for instance, is supposed to alleviate dry mouth. I’m sure it does, on a temporary basis, but then so would sipping just about anything.
Water is a good cure for dehydration, probably the best cure, but it’s not the only cure. In fact, study after study has revealed that water is no better for hydrating than any other fluid… in non-vapers. Any fluid intake, even the fluid found in normal solid foods, is often enough ‘water’ to stave off dehydration in a normal, healthy adult. This whole ‘8 glasses of water a day’ thing had been largely debunked. But what about Vapers and their increased intake of hygroscopic substances like Propylene Glycol? Does it make any difference?
Well, not only is propylene glycol a hygroscopic substance, so is table salt, caramel, sugar, and other chemicals. It may be true that for a normal healthy adult the consumption of coffee, soda, and iced tea are effective hydrators, but for people vaping PG-based e-liquids it might not be nearly enough to maintain hydration. I believe there is plenty of evidence to continue to support the need for water in order to stay properly hydrated when you vape. But not only “when” you vape.
The problem for many vapers is that drinking water, even sipping water, while vaping takes away from the enjoyment of vaping. So, instead of water they will drink coffee, tea, and beer, anything other than water. Since any fluid is going to temporarily relieve dry mouth some vapers tend to believe whatever they are consuming is working when in fact it isn’t. This is why some people wind up with headaches, nausea, and even muscle spasms despite drinking fluids while they vape.
Worse still, when a Vaper is not vaping, say at work, or other places where vaping has been banned, they are consuming even more hygroscopic substances with coffee, tea, sugared drinks, and so forth. So the idea then is to come up with a way for vapers to become hydrated enough that while they do vape and consume non-water fluids they can still maintain some semblance of hydration.
Back To 8 Glasses A Day
This brings us back to the outdated-for-most 8 glasses of water a day or more scenarios. There needs to be a way to convince vapers to drink enough water, or at least enough fluids that do not contain hygroscopic substances, during their non-vaping times.
I discussed this with Keira a couple of weeks ago, after a friend of ours was complaining about being thirsty all the time despite constant drinking of various fluids while he vaped. A heavy coffee drinker, this friend keeps a pot of coffee going day and night. He takes his coffee with milk and sugar, so he’s getting not only the negative effects of another hygroscopic substance (sugar) but also a mild diuretic (coffee). In addition to the coffee he was also drinking a fair amount of soda, which contains a lot sugar and salt, both hygroscopic substances. No wonder he was experiencing insatiable thirst, headaches, and whatnot.
I’ve known for a while about the various studies that have indicated that in normal adults hydration can be maintained by drinking practically anything, but what I didn’t know was exactly why vapers were experiencing more dehydration. This is when I discovered the whole “hygroscopic substances” thing. So I hit Google and began trying to piece together what was going on.
When I began vaping I too experienced a lot of thirst and, in particularly, dry eyes. I attributed the dry eyes to the vapor itself, and the thirst to vaping, but without any real evidence or reason why. I cured my own problems with thirst by drinking more water, but only during the times I was vaping. This wasn’t a cure; it was simply treating the symptoms, and while I wasn’t vaping I still got more headaches and even body aches. Now I wanted more, I wanted a real cure, a way to combat the negative effects of hygroscopic substances.
How To Drink More Water Without Crying About It
Everybody would drink more water if it didn’t taste like water. I know there are exceptions to everything, but I know very few people that like the taste of water, and getting them to drink more water is sometimes harder than getting someone to stop smoking. The reason why is because water is NOT coffee or soda or iced tea. It’s water. It’s boring.
Here’s how Keira and I not only learned to drink more water, but we learned to make it enjoyable, a habit, and something permanent. After no more than 10 days or so this little regime of ours become second nature to us, and it can become second nature to you too of you give it a shot.
The Magic Number – Most nutritionists and doctors will tell you (thought its been largely debunked) that you should drink 8-12 cups of water a day. When I first heard the number 12 my first instinct was to run away from it. “Twelve cups! That’s ridiculous! I’ll have no room left for iced tea”. Keira pretty much said the same thing; only substitute iced tea with “Yoo-Hoo”. And, come on, 12 cups does sound like a lot of water. But, it isn’t, not really.
A Cup is a Cup
A “cup” is just 8 ounces. K and I didn’t realize how little that was until we went into the kitchen and took out a cup measurer and filled it with one cup of water from the faucet. Then we took a normal glass that we would use for iced tea or coke and poured that 1 cup into the glass. It didn’t even reach half way to the top of the glass.
I took the glass and drank it down in less than 5 seconds. K did it next. Right there we realized how easy it was to drink 1-cup of water. It wasn’t a big deal and we didn’t have to stand there and drink water for 5 minutes. It was pretty much effortless.
Throughout the rest of that first day we made it a point to drink 1-cup of water every time we refilled our iced tea glass or grabbed a bottle of Yoo-Hoo. It was a simple matter of going into the kitchen, pouring 1-cup of water, drinking it and then either grabbing the bottle of Yoo-Hoo or fill a glass with iced tea. That was it. In a matter of days we realized that we were drinking a whole less iced tea and Yoo-Hoo and much more water. We felt better than we had in a very long time. For the first time in a long time we “felt” hydrated. Best of all, whenever we’re vaping we feel better about drinking anything we want, because we are always hydrated.
Like I said above, the whole 8-12 glasses a day thing has been shown to be untrue for a normal healthy person. The idea is to stay hydrated, and you can do that with just about anything. But with Vapers I believe it’s different, very different, and the ingredients of e-Liquid, both PG and VG (VG to a lesser degree) is what causes this dehydration we all seem to go through. So for us taking in more water is important.
I can’t speak for everyone, but I can speak for K and me. We use electronic cigarettes because we enjoy electronic cigarettes. We don’t use them because we can’t get off the nicotine habit. We’re not using them because we would otherwise smoke cigarettes. We vape because enjoy filling our lungs with warm, delicious vapor, and it’s relaxing, enjoyable, and just plain old fun. We have no plans to stop. But, without proper hydration it can quickly become a real drag. (If you’ll pardon the pun) So staying hydrated means enjoying vaping even more.
If you’re not practicing good hydration techniques, whatever they may be you are most likely suffering from dry mouth, dry skin, headaches, nausea, or a myriad of other dehydration issues. All of these things are preventable simply by being properly hydrated.
The biggest “plus” for K and me was our skin. We often complained of dry skin and always blamed it on the air conditioning that is constantly running. No matter what we did to prevent dry skin we could never get rid of it completely… until we started drinking 12 cups of water a day.
Even if the day comes when we no longer use electronic cigarettes we will always continue drinking enough water to stay properly hydrated. It’s so simple and it made a huge difference in our lives.
So, dear readers, how do you keep hydrated? How bad was your dehydration when you started vaping? Are you dealing with it now? What symptoms did you go through, or are going through now?
Tell us what you’re doing to cope in the comments below. In fact, the best response will win a free 50ML bottle of e-Liquid from Mt Baker Vapor. I will judge the best response in 2 weeks. It will be completely subjective and strictly based on your comment and your comment alone. So, speak up, tell everyone how you handled this uncomfortable part of vaping.