If you’re an active athlete and not keeping adequately hydrated, eating more than the recommended 1 gram per pound of body weight daily can increase your risk for kidney problems. But consuming protein after an intense workout can aid muscle recovery. Bottom line: Protein supplements are fine, just make sure you’re very well hydrated when you take them.

  1. Know your kidney numbers

Young guys should get a general physical checkup at least every other year, if not annually, for routine blood tests that look at kidney function. If the kidneys are normal, it’s very hard to damage them. But if a kidney isn’t working perfectly—and many kidney diseases are symptomless—you can put additional stress on the organ. As a  rules of staying hydrated, I recommend getting a checkup before upping your protein intake, especially if you’re doing it for a big athletic contest, like a triathlon. Typical symptoms of bad kidney function are swelling, fatigue, and upset stomach or digestion issues. If your urine turns foamy or dark brown or red, call your doctor.

  1. Don’t worry about kidney stones until later in life

Stones are rare in young adults, but can form from dehydration, too much animal protein, a salty diet, or diuretic abuse. Young guys have some natural buffers. That changes once you pass 40. The average 25- or 30-year-old doesn’t need to see a urologist unless his numbers are off or his physician spots something.

  1. Opt for plain water over sports drinks

Sports drinks are fine for replacing amino acids and electrolytes after an intense six-hour bike ride or a multi-hour run. But even then, one drink is more than enough. Plus, it’s rare to need a lot of extra salt unless you’re doing a marathon or something similar.

Even with all these rules of staying hydrated, water should still be your main therapy. Make sure most of your fluids come from water—not coffee, not tea/iced tea, not fruit juices.

Thank you to the men’s Journal for this article & photo

Water Quality Dealers – this is the kind of info you should be posting!