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Staying Hydrated in the Philippines

Most of us move here from a location of cooler climates. Sure most of these locations have seasons and you will argue summers can be very hot.

Also, if you’re from the U.S. you probably have an air conditioned car, house and work location. Most of the times you are only out in the heat walking from the house to the car or the car to a building.  Here you will be in the heat most of the time. Sure the malls are air conditioned but not at the level you would be used to back in your home country. Also at home, you will probably only use a fan to keep cooler.

If you are a jogger, golfer or have some type of job or participate in an outdoor occupation or activity you already know about keeping yourself hydrated.

For those of you who do not, let me explain. The body’s defense mechanism to cool itself off is through perspiration. When your body is overheated you will perspire. As this moisture evaporates it takes some of the heat with it.

Some people, me included used to say that I do not perspire that much. You do, it is just the amount you perspire and where speed of it evaporating might be quick enough that you do not stay wet. That was something I would say when I lived in California. But there the humidity was very low so the evaporation was faster.

Even in Florida I rarely noticed wetness on my clothes from perspiration. But as I mentioned above, I did not spenglass_of_waterd a lot of time out in the heat.

Now living in the Philippines and do not run air conditioning except at night to sleep, I sweat a lot. There are times I feel sweaty, the water running down my chest, my back or from my scalp.  At times when I change my clothes they feel damp with all the perspiration absorbed into the clothes. At home we have electric fans. Fans do not cool the temperature, if just moves air and helps perspiration evaporate quicker to help remove the heat.

Experts say the human body needs 1.5-2.5 liters of fluid a day. This is just during normal use and weather. If it is extremely hot, or if you are exercising, you will need more. Very often we think we don’t need fluids because we don’t feel thirsty, but this is not the case. Our feeling of thirst often kicks in late. And sometimes we mistake feeling thirsty for hunger. So try drinking a glass of water the next time you want a snack between meals.

You might notice a feeling of lethargy which is caused by your body trying to conserve moisture. Always be sure to drink plenty of water, or a low calorie fruit drink. Sports drinks are loaded with too much sugar and most other water alternatives are not much better.

I had heard coffee works as a diuretic which would cause you to urinate more often, but researching this article I found information disproving this thought. But coffee can cause loose bowel which can cause increased loss of body fluids.

How do you know if you’re dehydrated? Dehydration can cause thirst, decreased urination, dark urine, headache dry mouth and/or dizziness. I also read the older you get the thirst sensation decreases.

With this all said, when you’re in the Philippines, or any hot climate you need to have to be conscience of this and make sure you drink a lot of fluids and stay hydrated. With loss of water you also loss salts, so if you’re very active a sports drink can be an added help since they have the needed salt and minerals lost with perspiration.
I am guilty of this do not think of grabbing a glass or bottle of water when I am out and about. Luckily Elena and my nieces will always bring me a large glass of water, iced tea or some beverage mid mornings, afternoons and evenings.

So, keep this in mind, you need to keep up your intake of fluids since you will be losing it at a higher rate here than back home.

27 Responses to “Staying Hydrated in the Philippines”

  1. Ken Harmes says:

    Hi Bruce.I agree entirely. I must say I drink quite a bit more than perhaps you do but I certainly sweat a lot and make sure I drink regularly(not alcohol) to combat this.I have a document on Electrolytes which I will mail to you which you can add to your post if you wish. Ken.

    • Bruce says:

      I agree, I do forget to drink water and when I see the dark color urine it reminds me to be better. Thankfully Elena is conscience of it and tries to make me drink more.

  2. Dan Mihaliak says:

    Hi Bruce
    You forgot my favorite way to hydrate and dehydrate San Miguel. Just joking alcohol especially in tropical temperatures can cause dehydration quickly.

    • Bruce says:

      You are right about the alcohol. As in the article, you sometimes do not feel thirst, but for me, if I take a sip of water, my body then makes me empty the bottle.

  3. Dan2vero says:

    Hello Bruce,

    Bruce, even if you weren’t in the Philippines, they say (the doctors that is), you should consume at least 8 cups of water a day or more. I forget the exact amount now, but 8 sounds good. Plus more if you are going to be in a climate where you will be in humid and hot weather consistently.
    This is suppose to be good for us “over 40″ guys, and good for the prostate, and your urinary tract system. Instead of drinking a lot of coffee or soda.
    But staying hydrated like you said, is very important for us newcomers to the Philippines. Rose had already told me of this concern, and I have no fear..she will be constantly reminding me to drink my water…:) I tease her and say to her, that when I am sick, is like taking care of a 5 year So she always tease me back by saying..”oh not getting sick with me, I already have 7 year old daughter”..hehe

    Thanks Bruce,
    Danny 🙂

  4. Riza says:

    That’s why each at home have their own cute small mineral water gallons, I don’t know if you have seen one…but is it true that drinking natural water is more advisable than mineral water? I mean, what’s the difference, they’re both water, right? I just heard of this from one of my neighbors. Besides, you can’t drink Manila tap water…and you know why…LOL! Seriously, I don’t have any idea what the heck it means that the water is being stripped of its natural contents…

  5. When I go to your site Mike, I read “Thank you for visiting my site. This is Mike Smithson from Nyköping, 18.” Well if you live in Nyköping you live in the same city as me and you sure dont look 18 either. I dont want to be mean in any way, but this smells strange…

  6. Evelyn says:

    bruce, be sure to keep hydrated there in davao..
    what i do here is to eat half banana or any fruit then a glass of water every so often

  7. don m. says:

    Wow you get junk mail just like I get junk phone calls. Good luck to you. Haha. I wonder who mike is? lol

    • Bruce says:


      I am as confused as you are and Stefan has not replied yet to explain.
      The only derogatory comment was from a “Bruce” on my article about “Homosexuals in the Philippines” but I think I answered it well.

      • don m. says:

        you do a good job all the time don’t take stange posts personaly. You can never tell what the problem is and just as I said people often are careless in relys to blogs.

        • Bruce says:


          Thanks for the good words. I do hope the readership will grow and also I find some way to earn some money through the blog. Maybe doing house designs and construction here.

  8. Certainly the same situation as in Cebu. It’s just too bad that the tap water should not be consumed !!

  9. Vikki says:

    I live in the city and I’d say that it’s not safe to drink the water from the tap. Water can turn into a great business with that in mind.

    • Bruce says:

      Bottled water is already a great business, look at all the bottled water delivery trucks and all the different brands of water avaliable in the stores.

  10. Mindanao Bob says:

    Mike’s comment has nothing to do with this blog. He isn’t even a reader. That is what is called Comment Spam. It’s just left by a bot, and you should probably just delete it.

  11. Lizza says:

    When I went to Davao earlier this year, I was surprised at how much hotter it was there than in Manila. It felt like the height of summer! Drank lots of water…but then, I always do. 🙂

    • Bruce says:


      Yes it is hotter here and keeping hydrated is important. The Philippines runs much in a north to south direction which puts Davao much closer to the equator.

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