Effects of the Amount and Frequency of Fluid Intake on Cognitive Performance and Mood among Young Adults in Baoding, Hebei, China: A Randomized Controlled Trial
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Water is a critical nutrient that is important for the maintenance of the physiological function of the human body. This article aimed to investigate the effects of the amount and frequency of fluid intake on cognitive performance and mood. A double-blinded randomized controlled trial was designed and implemented on college students aged 18–23 years in Baoding, China. Participants were randomly assigned into one of three groups: the recommended behavior group (RB group) who drank 200 mL of
... rank 200 mL of water every 2 h, the half amount group (HA group) who drank 100 mL of water every 2 h, and the high frequency group (HF group) who drank 110 mL of water every 1 h. The intervention lasted 2 days. Urine osmolality, cognitive performance, and mood of participants in each group were compared using the one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA). A total of 92 participants (46 females, 46 males) completed this study with a completion rate of 95.8%. The urine osmolality of the HA group was higher than that of the RB group and the HF group at two time points (p < 0.05). At time point 1, the scores in the portrait memory test and vigor were statistically different (F = 20.45, p < 0.001; F = 5.46, p = 0.006). It was found that the scores for the portrait memory test in the RB group were lower than those in the HA group and the HF group (p = 0.007; p < 0.001), while the scores of the HF group were higher than those of the HA group (p < 0.001). The scores for vigor in the RB group were significantly higher than those of the HA group (p = 0.006), and they were also significantly higher than those of the HF group (p = 0.004). At time point 2, only the scores for vigor were statistically different (F = 3.80, p = 0.026). It was found that the scores for vigor in the RB group were higher than those in the HA group and HF group (p = 0.018; p = 0.019). Both the amount and frequency of fluid intake may affect urine osmolality and vigor, but these factors have limited impacts on cognitive performance. Rational fluid intake behavior may be beneficial to improve the hydration status and mood of young adults. More research is needed, especially experimental research, to allow causal conclusions to be drawn.