Wise Food Storage Blog

What You Need to Know about Dehydration

It’s critical to understand the importance of hydration and how to stay safe if your regular water supply is interrupted. Going without food isn’t fun, but going without water will get you in big trouble – fast. You can only go without water for about three to five days. As soon as cells are deprived of water they start to deteriorate and die, soon after which organs quickly shut down and the damage can be irreparable.

You need 64 ounces of water every day. If you’re working hard, it’s hot or you’re sweating, you’ll need much more.

Dehydration danger signs

How can you tell if you’re getting dehydrated? Danger signs include:

Signs that a dehydrated person needs immediate medical attention:

Purifying water

If a safe water supply is interrupted, making your own clean water with a water purifier is the smartest bet, especially since water is very heavy and not very portable. We favor all the Katadyn purifiers because they are reliable and made for emergency use. Be sure you get a purifier and not a desalinater unless you plan to make drinking water from salt water.

If you don’t have access to a purifier, boiling water is an excellent way to purify it as all pathogens die at 185 degrees. Boil water hard for at least 1 minutes (2 minutes if you’re in the mountains) then transfer to clean containers and store for up to 24 hours.

Water purification tablets contain either chlorine or iodine and are also effective, but tend to leave a medicinal taste.

Collecting water safely

Storing water

Clean, sterile glass or stainless steel pots are the best containers for storing water. Plastic can be used as long as it’s clean, but plastic degrades over time and can leave harmful trace chemicals in the water.