Are you drinking enough water, is your body hydrated? Are great questions to ask yourself, especially in the colder months of the year, we generally don’t drink as much water as the warmer months! A lot of people don’t realise how important it is to hydrate their body. I hope by reading this article that you will make the shift to hydrate your body everyday. Each morning when I wake up I fill 2 x 1 litre bottles of water and carry them with me through out the day, to make sure I have consumed my 2 litres by the end of each day. Remember if you are exercising daily you might need to increase your water in take.
Why Good Hydration is Essential for Your Health
You may have heard that the human body can survive for over a week without food. But do you know that it can only last a few days without water?
The body consists of two-thirds water, and every cell depends on it to work properly.
Our bodies need water to:
- Remove wastes and toxins
- Transport nutrients and oxygen
- Control heart rate and blood pressure
- Regulate body temperature
- Lubricate joints
- Protect organs and tissue
- Create saliva
There are many reasons that a person ends up dehydrated, but the most common factors are not taking in enough water and losing too much fluids due to illness or extreme exercise.
An average adult loses 10 cups of water each day through normal functions like breathing, sweating, and using the bathroom. We need to eat water-rich foods, or drink water, to replace the fluids that are lost.
Some of the reasons that the body becomes dehydrated include:
- Diarrhoea or vomiting
- Chronic illness like kidney or liver disease, diabetes, or cystic fibrosis
- Age – older adults are often less likely to respond to cues of thirst
- Hot or humid weather
- Exercise and fluids lost through sweat
- Excess weight
The amount of water needed to stay hydrated varies from person to person, according to health and lifestyle. Thirst is not always an indicator of fluid needs, so water should be taking in periodically throughout the day.
Some of the best ways to keep the body hydrated are:
- Drink at least 8 cups of water a day, according to the Australian Guide to Healthy Eating and the American Dietetic Association. People at risk of dehydration, like pregnant women, should drink more. If you don’t like the taste of plain water, try adding lemon or a caffeine-free herbal tea.
- Eat more foods that contain water. Greens like broccoli, and many other vegetables, fruits, and soups are great sources of water. Sport drinks also contain water, but make sure that they do not have any added sugars or artificial colourings and flavourings.
- Don’t wait to drink. Make a conscious effort to drink water throughout the day, even if you just takes sips every hour or so. If you are feeling ill, have just worked out, or are in very warm weather, you’ll need to take in even more water than usual. Keep a water bottle with you wherever you go, and start and end the day with a glass of water.
- Avoid foods that dehydrate. Caffeine, salty foods, sugary soft drinks and juices, and foods with sugar all deplete the body’s fluids.
As you find ways to enjoy drinking water, and to keep it flowing into you all day long, you’ll be blessed with more energy, better skin, and optimal health!
Nourish your body, nurture your soul,