We have known that drinking water throughout the day is essential for good health for a long time. Not only that, but water is “critical for human survival” as about 60% of our bodies are water.
However, many of us still find it a challenge to drink the right amount of water. Too often, we enjoy coffee, sodas, or alcoholic beverages such as beer or wine to quench our thirst.
The exact amount of water you need is dependent on many factors, including how active you are, so you may want to consult a dietician.
Benefits of Staying Hydrated
- Staying hydrated is critical for many body functions: removing waste, regulating temperature, and chemical reactions.
- Research has shown that “dehydration is prevalent within the healthcare setting and in the community, and appears to be associated with increased morbidity and mortality.”
Signs and Symptoms of Dehydration
Be vigilant and watch for the signs and symptoms of dehydration:
- Dark yellow urine
- Dry mouth, eyes, and lips
- Infrequent urination
- Muscle cramps
- Nausea, vomiting
Top 5 Ways to Stay Hydrated
Again, it's essential to monitor your urination.
- If you are staying hydrated, you should be urinating between six and tens times a day.
- Aim for urine that is a pale, clear color which is one sign that you are hydrated.
- Keep in mind that many medications may alter the frequency, color, and volume of your urine.
- Talk to your doctor about your urination. They will advise you further on your urine’s health implications and may make recommendations for staying hydrated.
Water is always the first and best choice for a hydrating beverage. It's easy to forget to fill up your glass, so try using these helpful reminders:
- drink water when you feel thirsty, with a meal, between a meal, and before, during, and after exercise.
- Another popular reminder is eight glasses of water per day, which is memorable and attainable.
- Remember that your energy will be sapped when you don’t consume enough water, and you will feel worn out.
- Enjoy a glass of water as soon as you get up in the morning to get your day started right.
3) Other Sources
Many foods and other beverages also contain water and are great choices to stay hydrated.
- Try adding herbal tea to your day; it is delicious and is mostly water.
- Consider adding some water-dense foods such as berries, celery, and cucumbers to your diet. These choices are water-rich and relatively low in calories.
- Other delicious, healthy, and water-rich food choices include spinach, broccoli, apples, oranges, tomatoes, and watermelon.
- When the weather is hot, you lose more water through perspiration, so a cold salad made up of these water-rich foods is a great choice.
4) Too much Water
- While it is very uncommon, it is possible to drink too much water, which overloads the kidney’s ability to process and rid the body of the water.
- This results in our blood’s sodium content becoming diluted, which is a life-threatening condition called hyponatremia.
- Again, this is rare, but it bears remembering; don’t overdue your zest to stay hydrated.
5) Keep Hydrating Interesting
- Invest in some fun, colorful to-go water bottles to make your daily drink more enjoyable.
- Clean these well daily with soap, water, and a bottle brush.
- I love adding just a splash of orange, cranberry, and grapefruit juices to my water to add a little flavor without adding a ton of calories.
It’s likely that you never go anywhere without your mobile phone, so make carrying a water bottle all the time your new habit.
Along with your resistance training gear, massage gear, and kinesiology tape, throw in a couple of clean water bottles into your gym bag. Having a water bottle handy for your workouts will aid in your hydration while working out.
Water is literally life, as it is an essential part of our bodily processes, such as removing waste, keeping our joints healthy, and protecting tissues. Every single cell in our body needs an adequate amount of water to perform its function correctly. Find your way to enjoying water throughout your day, and you will improve your overall health.