Most of us do not drink enough water, we, therefore, live in a state of constant dehydration which ultimately is bad for you and your health. Being dehydrated, that is not consuming the amount of water your body needs for normal bodily functions affects all body cells. Remember, our bodies are 60-70% water, we can go for a month or more without food but more than a couple of days without water, and we are in serious trouble.
Guidance suggests we should drink eight glasses of water a day amounting to about 2 to 2.5 litres of water, it is essential to take on water throughout the day to replace lost fluid from the body.
Water is consumed in a variety of ways, and a large part of our daily water requirement comes from the food we eat. Generally speaking, water is best when it does not have caffeine or alcohol in it, although to some degree these drinks would help keep you hydrated.
Staying hydrated is very important, it benefits nearly all bodily functions especially brain and kidney functions, ensuring all cells and organs have an adequate amount of water to run smoothly. Your urine should be straw-coloured or paler, if it is darker than this there is a good chance you’re already or are becoming; dehydrated. Taking on more water would undoubtedly be beneficial, this is an excellent guide to quickly establishing your current hydration levels.
Are you thirsty?
If you are, you are already dehydrated, and you have not consumed enough water to meet the needs of your body. Once you reach the point that you feel thirsty it’s likely you would have already lost about 1% of your body weight in water, failure to meet your bodies needs at this point will cause impaired performance and increased body temperature.
The best way to stay hydrated is to drink little and often if working out or personal training then isotonic drinks with about 6% sugars will aid hydration and speed up water uptake by the body.
Drink before, during and after exercise
We require additional water when we work out! Exercising is demanding and consumes water supplies to cool the body, this assists in temperature regulation to meet the demand for increased organ functions etc. It’s essential not only to stay hydrated while exercising but ensure you are hydrated before you begin exercising, often if you are dehydrated when exercising this can cause nausea and headaches (your bodies way of saying ‘I don’t want to do this without more water’).
As well as headaches and other symptoms it will almost certainly have an effect on your performance during exercise.
‘Drink water before during and after exercise.’
Remember to drink little and often, although coffee and tea can arguably be considered water replacement it would be much better to drink fresh water, or an isotonic sports drink especially during exercise that will also assist in the replacement of body salts and minerals etc.
Another good reason for taking on water at regular intervals during the day is that sometimes when we feel hungry, the signals are very similar to when you feel thirsty and therefore might prompt you to eat a snack when really your body is just thirsty, and you just needed a glass of water.
Start the day with a litre of Ice Cold water with a Slice of Lemon.
Although it does not have to be ice-cold, in fact, some have suggested warm water, I personally prefer the ice-cold option as cold shocks the system which can be a stimulus for activating brown fats to be metabolised, much like having a cold shower but from the inside. A cold shower has also been suggested to work for activating fat stores for energy.
The habit of drinking a pint about half a litre of water at the start the day will get your water intake up to a decent start ensuring we stay hydrated, it also fires up the bodies metabolic systems letting it know it’s ‘go’ time. One of the main reasons for skipping breakfast is detrimental to weight loss.
Lemon has many benefits including;
- Aiding digestion
- Powerful antioxidant properties
- A healthy dose of vitamin C
- Helps prevent kidney stones