Is Your Glass Half Empty? Mild Dehydration Causes Pessimism

According to a new study on dehydration and mood, the optimist may view her glass as half full because she drank that water already. While mild dehydration didn’t appear to affect cognitive function in the young women who participated in the study, it did dampen their moods and caused them to perceive tasks as much harder than when well-hydrated.

For the study, which appears in the January 2012 issue of the Journal of Nutrition, researchers induced mild dehydration among 25 subjects and measured their performance on tests of memory, concentration, and mood. When dehydrated, the women were more negative, had trouble concentrating and were “more fatigued, and this was true during mild exercise and when sitting at a computer,” explained University of Connecticut professor and lead researcher Lawrence E. Armstrong, PhD in a WebMD story.

Dr. Robert Glatter of Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City told WebMD that the study should serve as a reminder to stay hydrated. “Just a small change in state of hydration was enough to affect mood, ability to concentrate, and lead to development of headaches,” he said. Dr. Glatter recommends consuming moderate quantities of water, both during and after exercise.

It turns out that, as actress Jennifer Aniston famously warned last year, not drinking enough water can make you “cranky.” While Jen’s right that regularly filling your water glass could improve your mood, if you want to be really smart, you’ll get that water from the tap.

Related: 10 Ways to Increase Your Daily Water Intake

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Debbie Miller
Debbie false2 years ago

makes sense to me, thanks

Manuela B.
Manuela B.3 years ago

yep this study could very well be makes sense

Kathy Perez
Kathy Johnson3 years ago

very very interesting...

roseann s.
rose ann s.3 years ago

great article..ty

LM Sunshine

Great info! water is amazing and vital to life and our planet. Thank you for article, and the ending reference, 'water from the tap'. Another must read article.

Kristina C.
Kristina C.3 years ago

Well - I guess there are always exception to the rule. I am always a bit dehydrated because of a kidney issue - but I have never been a pessimist.
But if water makes you happy - have at it!

Please sign my petition:

Gabriella Bertelmann

Not really surprising, but good to have it spelled out. thanks

Tracy G.
Tracy G.3 years ago


federico bortoletto

Grazie per l'articolo

Sheila S.
Sheila S.3 years ago

Regardless of what the studies may say, the tap water in my city (Philadelphia) is so filled with chemicals it just tastes awful. I will continue to drink my bottled water to stay hydrated.