Hydration for Health: 6 Reasons to Drink Water and Strategies to Help you Hydrate

hydration for health: 6 tips for staying hydrated

Six Reasons to Drink Water 

When temperatures are hot, it's important to stay hydrated. Here are 6 reasons to drink water:

  1. Water is essential for waste removal and detoxification processes in the body. Drinking too little water is a common cause of constipation. The kidneys also need water to eliminate waste products through urine. Urinating less than five times a day or having very dark urine could also indicate you are not getting enough water.

  2. Water keeps muscles working efficiently. Our bodies are about 70% water so dehydration causes muscles to tire, tighten, or cramp.

  3. Water is good for out brains too. Like muscle, the brain is composed of about 70% water so dehydration can lead to poor concentration, fuzzy thinking, mood swings, and headache. In fact, a study has linked driving while dehydrated to the effects of driving while under the influence of alcohol.

  4. Water helps control eating. It's not uncommon to mistake the need for water with the need for food. Sometimes the need for water causes sugar cravings. 

  5. Water helps control our body temperature. Our bodies use sweat to keep us cool and fight fevers. This is especially important in hot temperatures, during physical exertion, or when we are ill. 

  6. Water is essential for blood circulation. Dehydration decreases blood volume. This increases work load on the heart and causes blood vessel constriction to maintain blood pressure. 

Six Strategies to Help you Hydrate

  1. Drink the amount appropriate for you body. This may not be eight 8-ounce glasses. In general adults need half an ounce for every pound of body weight. For example, a 120 pound adult would generally need about 60 ounces of fluid daily. Children generally need about one ounce per pound of body weight. This amount may increase with physical exertion, exposure to hot temperatures, or certain medical conditions. 

  2. Skip the soda and sweetened or artificially sweetened beverages. Children and adults who drink a lot of soda and sports drinks are more likely to be overweight and obese than those tho drink little or none. 

  3. Drink water before, during, and after exercise. Aim for at least 8 ounces prior to exercising. 

  4. Start your day with a drink of water and drink consistently throughout the day.

  5. Try drinking a glass of water before meals or snacks to help determine if any hunger pains are really for food or if your body just needed water.

  6. Get tired of plain water? Infuse it, add a splash of juice, freeze fruit or herbs in ice cube trays and add to your water. Puree that fruit about to go bad and freeze it in ice cube trays for tasty water additions.

Want to learn more about hydration? Class 6 of L.E.A.N start is all about water and ways to stay hydrated. Contact me to learn more about the workshops and services I offer. 

Sources/ Resources for more information on hydration:

  1. 5 Ways Your Hydrating Wrong

  2. Studies on Hydration Suggest...

  3. Why do we need water?

  4. 9 Weird Things Dehydration Does to Your Body

  5. Stop Wasting Overripe Fruit

  6. Flavored Ice Cubes

Get water infusion ideas to maintain hydration. Read now or pin for later. - Health Happens at Home

Infused Water

Fill a carafe, pitcher, ball jar, or glass with water and ice of your choice. Add fruit and herbs of choice. Let sit for 1 to 8 hours depending on how strong you would like the flavor to be. Enjoy!

Flavor ideas:

  • Lemon, cucumber and mint

  • Strawberries and blueberries

  • Pineapple

  • Apple and cinnamon stick

  • Honeydew and cantaloupe

  • Orange and mango

  • Pineapple and mint

  • Raspberry and Lime

  • Strawberry, cucumber, basil

  • Peach and basil

Posted on August 23, 2015 and filed under Nutrition Nibbles, Recipe.