Water is one of the most important nutrients that you both drink and absorb though the foods you eat. What exactly does water do in your body? It moistens the food you eat, aids in food digestion, transports nutrients throughout your body, helps eliminate waste, and decreases heat. Those are all pretty important functions that your body needs to be able to do. Yet so many people are dehydrated. We all know what hunger pains feel like. But does our body tell us we are thirsty? It sure does, some symptoms include headache, joint pain or stiffness, and even gastric ulcers. Do you find that you are chronically tired? You may actually be thirsty. Research has found that when you lose 5% of the water in your body due to dehydration your energy can drop by a whole quarter. The question you may be asking yourself at this point is how much water do you need to drink every day to stay healthy. The old rule of 8 cups a day doesn’t really apply because hydration levels are dependent on a lot of factors including age, weight, gender, how much you exercise, stress level, climate and muscle mass. A much better rule of thumb is to take how much you weigh and divide it in half, now drink that many oz of water every day. When it is hot, if you exercise, or drink beverages that are dehydrating (ie alcohol and soft drinks) then you need to add more water in. It is import to steadily drink water throughout the day to replenish what you lose. A good way to check hydration levels too is to see the color of your urine which should be roughly the color of straw or pale yellow. Drink water before you are actually thirsty to avoid dehydration. Carry a water bottle with you wherever you go and drink water often. There are apps for your phone or you can set a reminder to drink water every hour until it becomes a habit. Such a simple thing like drinking water will leaving you feeling refreshed, keep your digestion moving and keep your skin glowing. Grab some water right now, your body will thank you!
Here are some more fun facts about hydration. Do you have any to add? Comment below!!
-the food you eat can account for 20% of your hydration
-age impairs our bodies ability to stay hydrated, so simply getting older makes you more prone to dehydration
-our body’s lean mass is roughly 75% water and water makes up approximately half our body weight
-water carries heat away from your internal organs while you exercise to regulate body temperature
-drinking water when you first wake up activates your internal organs for the day
-water is the main component of blood
-we can lose over a liter of water a day just by sweating when heat rises to the surface of our skin
-it is estimated that 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated
-dehydration is one of the most common risk factors for developing kidney stones