In pursuit of online fame and wellness, a Toronto-based real estate agent and mother, Michelle Fairburn, found herself hospitalised after taking on the infamous "75 Hard" social media challenge.
The challenge, which has gone viral on platforms like TikTok, encourages participants to consume a gallon of water (approximately four litres) daily for 75 consecutive days.
However, for Fairburn, the consequences of this challenge turned out to be dire, raising concerns about the potential dangers lurking behind seemingly harmless online trends.
In a heartfelt TikTok video, Fairburn bravely shared her harrowing experience after religiously following the "75 Hard" water challenge for twelve days. She described how she began to feel unwell, attributing her discomfort to what she suspected was "water poisoning."
Woman attempts viral 75 hard water challenge, hospitalised
Water poisoning, scientifically known as hyponatremia, is a life-threatening condition caused by consuming excessive amounts of water.
While staying adequately hydrated is essential for overall health, overhydration can lead to a dangerous electrolyte imbalance, jeopardising vital bodily functions.
On the 12th day of her challenge, Fairburn recounted her frightening symptoms. She revealed that the previous night had been restless, with frequent trips to the bathroom disrupting her sleep.
As the day progressed, her condition worsened. She experienced nausea, weakness, and an inability to eat, leading her to be "on the toilet all morning." Worried and unsure of what to do, she turned to her TikTok community for advice.
Later that day, Fairburn provided another update, revealing that she had sought medical attention. A doctor promptly diagnosed her with severe sodium deficiency, a critical aspect of hyponatremia.
The medical professional emphasised that such a deficiency could have fatal consequences if left untreated.
Acknowledging the gravity of her situation, Fairburn courageously shared the importance of seeking professional help and promptly headed to the hospital for further assessment. Her medical team immediately implemented measures to restore her sodium levels gradually.
Despite her alarming experience, Fairburn expressed her determination to continue working out.
However, her medical advisors firmly instructed her to limit her daily water intake to less than half a litre, emphasising the vital need to strike a healthy balance between hydration and electrolyte levels.
The "75 Hard" water challenge has gained immense popularity on social media, with scores of participants documenting their journeys through daily videos and updates. However, Fairburn's ordeal serves as a stark reminder that viral challenges, although seemingly innocent, can carry severe risks if not approached with caution and proper knowledge.
Health experts urge individuals to avoid extreme health trends that may compromise their well-being. Instead, they advocate for a balanced approach to fitness and hydration, tailored to individual needs and health requirements.
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