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Effects of an electrolyte additive on hydration and drinking behavior during wildfire suppression.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

The purpose of this study was to compare the effects of a water + electrolyte solution versus plain water on changes in drinking behaviors, hydration status, and body temperatures during wildfire suppression.

METHODS

Eight participants consumed plain water, and eight participants consumed water plus an electrolyte additive during 15 hours of wildfire suppression. Participants wore a specially outfitted backpack hydration system equipped with a digital flow meter system affixed inline to measure drinking characteristics (drinking frequency and volume). Body weight and urine-specific gravity were collected pre- and postshift. Ambient, core, and skin temperatures were measured continuously using a wireless system. Work output was monitored using accelerometry.

RESULTS

There were no differences between groups for body weight, drinking frequency, temperature data, activity, or urine-specific gravity (1.019 +/- 0.007 to 1.023 +/- 0.010 vs. 1.019 +/- 0.005 to 1.024 +/- 0.009 for water and water + electrolyte groups pre- and postshift, respectively; P < .05). There was a main effect for time for body weight, demonstrating an overall decrease (78.1 +/- 13.3 and 77.3 +/- 13.3 kg pre- and postshift, respectively; P < .05) across the work shift. The water group consumed more total fluid (main effect for treatment) than the water + electrolyte group (504 +/- 472 vs. 285 +/- 279 mL.h(-1) for the water and water + electrolyte groups, respectively; P < .05).

CONCLUSION

The addition of an electrolyte mixture to plain water decreased the overall fluid consumption of the water + electrolyte group by 220 mL.h(-1) (3.3 L.d(-1)). Supplementing water with electrolytes can reduce the amount of fluid necessary to consume and transport during extended activity. This can minimize carrying excessive weight, possibly reducing fatigue during extended exercise.

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  • Authors+Show Affiliations

    ,

    Human Performance Laboratory, University of Montana, Missoula, MT 59812, USA.

    , , ,

    Source

    MeSH

    Adult
    Body Temperature
    Body Weight
    Dehydration
    Double-Blind Method
    Drinking
    Electrolytes
    Female
    Fires
    Hot Temperature
    Humans
    Male
    Physical Exertion
    Rehydration Solutions
    Specific Gravity
    Task Performance and Analysis
    Urinalysis
    Young Adult

    Pub Type(s)

    Journal Article
    Randomized Controlled Trial
    Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
    Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

    Language

    eng

    PubMed ID

    18715125

    Citation

    Cuddy, John S., et al. "Effects of an Electrolyte Additive On Hydration and Drinking Behavior During Wildfire Suppression." Wilderness & Environmental Medicine, vol. 19, no. 3, 2008, pp. 172-80.
    Cuddy JS, Ham JA, Harger SG, et al. Effects of an electrolyte additive on hydration and drinking behavior during wildfire suppression. Wilderness Environ Med. 2008;19(3):172-80.
    Cuddy, J. S., Ham, J. A., Harger, S. G., Slivka, D. R., & Ruby, B. C. (2008). Effects of an electrolyte additive on hydration and drinking behavior during wildfire suppression. Wilderness & Environmental Medicine, 19(3), pp. 172-80. doi:10.1580/07-WEME-OR-114.1.
    Cuddy JS, et al. Effects of an Electrolyte Additive On Hydration and Drinking Behavior During Wildfire Suppression. Wilderness Environ Med. 2008;19(3):172-80. PubMed PMID: 18715125.
    * Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
    TY - JOUR T1 - Effects of an electrolyte additive on hydration and drinking behavior during wildfire suppression. AU - Cuddy,John S, AU - Ham,Julie A, AU - Harger,Stephanie G, AU - Slivka,Dustin R, AU - Ruby,Brent C, PY - 2008/8/22/pubmed PY - 2008/12/30/medline PY - 2008/8/22/entrez SP - 172 EP - 80 JF - Wilderness & environmental medicine JO - Wilderness Environ Med VL - 19 IS - 3 N2 - OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this study was to compare the effects of a water + electrolyte solution versus plain water on changes in drinking behaviors, hydration status, and body temperatures during wildfire suppression. METHODS: Eight participants consumed plain water, and eight participants consumed water plus an electrolyte additive during 15 hours of wildfire suppression. Participants wore a specially outfitted backpack hydration system equipped with a digital flow meter system affixed inline to measure drinking characteristics (drinking frequency and volume). Body weight and urine-specific gravity were collected pre- and postshift. Ambient, core, and skin temperatures were measured continuously using a wireless system. Work output was monitored using accelerometry. RESULTS: There were no differences between groups for body weight, drinking frequency, temperature data, activity, or urine-specific gravity (1.019 +/- 0.007 to 1.023 +/- 0.010 vs. 1.019 +/- 0.005 to 1.024 +/- 0.009 for water and water + electrolyte groups pre- and postshift, respectively; P < .05). There was a main effect for time for body weight, demonstrating an overall decrease (78.1 +/- 13.3 and 77.3 +/- 13.3 kg pre- and postshift, respectively; P < .05) across the work shift. The water group consumed more total fluid (main effect for treatment) than the water + electrolyte group (504 +/- 472 vs. 285 +/- 279 mL.h(-1) for the water and water + electrolyte groups, respectively; P < .05). CONCLUSION: The addition of an electrolyte mixture to plain water decreased the overall fluid consumption of the water + electrolyte group by 220 mL.h(-1) (3.3 L.d(-1)). Supplementing water with electrolytes can reduce the amount of fluid necessary to consume and transport during extended activity. This can minimize carrying excessive weight, possibly reducing fatigue during extended exercise. SN - 1080-6032 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/18715125/Effects_of_an_electrolyte_additive_on_hydration_and_drinking_behavior_during_wildfire_suppression_ L2 - https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/1080-6032-19-3-172 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -