8 Reasons to Drink More Water
…coming to you from Grand Cayman island!…surrounded by: water!
I have spent the last several days in paradise. I am going to be honest, relaxing can be difficult for me. At home, yoga, running, and other forms of exercise are typically my go-to relaxation time. (I know some people probably don’t see how those activities are all calming, but they are for me 🙂 ), but our schedules are BUSY! I know you all can relate! It can be difficult to really find time to not do anything. As a society we’re always going, going, going. I pencil time into my schedule on the weekends that literally says “r&r” or “Teresa time,” so that I force myself to take time for me, and I can check it off my days to-do list.
I made extra sure during my vacation to do a whole lot of nothing. Reminiscing and planning alone in my head. I am NOT a nap taker typically, because it negatively affects my already unrestful sleeping, but I allowed myself to fall asleep on the beach listening to Serial (has anyone else listened to that AH-mazing NPR piece??). I woke up before dawn each morning to read and watch the sunrise off the beach out the back of our condo. I couldn’t stop thinking to myself, could life get any better? Someone pinch me. It was a dream!
My main New Years resolution is to rid myself of things in my life that do not serve me, so I spent a lot of reflection time combing through the pieces and parts in my life that may leave me feeling lighter and even happier than I already am if they were removed – people, tendencies I have, things I haven’t been able to let go of from my past, etc.
I also want to spend this new year spreading the knowledge of health, wellness, and the mind-body connection to as large an audience as I can.
Being around my family 24/7 the last week has made me even more hyperaware of how little water most people consume regularly. There are lots of differing opinions on health related topics by various experts and studies, but I think the one and only thing I’ve never read a counter argument regarding is that water is the best (and cheapest!) detoxifier out there. Our blood is 90% water, we need to keep it flowing freely.
I am not embarrassed to admit I go to the bathroom probably once or twice every hour because I drink a gallon, or close to it, throughout each day. I’ve been doing it for the last several years, but the negative effects are noticeable when I, for whatever reason, can’t get in my normal water intake for the day. I am known for having my big purple Nalgene with me at all times- filling it up, and chugging it down. Carrying around a water bottle makes it much easier to get in your daily intake.
Even though there are plenty more, here are 8 reasons to drink more water each and every day:
- Glowing Skin: our bodies are made up of mostly water, our skin is our largest organ, thus our skin needs water. Water moisturizes skin, making it smooth and soft. It also reduces wrinkles. No more buying expensive wrinkle cream, it’s pouring out of your faucet for free!
- Healthy Tummy (digestion): water is essential to your digestion. It will keep you regular and keep things moving, and as a result, much less bloating and “feeling gross.”
- Natural Weight Loss: again, forget all those expensive diets and pills, water is an awesome aid in weight loss. Increasing water intake actually reduces water retention. Drinking 2 glasses of water just prior to a meal will also make you feel more full, so you will eat less. It removes by-products of fat and raises your metabolism.
- Prevents Cramps and Strains: water is important for everyone, but even more so if you’re exercising and sweating on a regular basis. It will keep your muscles better lubricated and your joints more elastic.
- Flushes Out Toxins: yes, like me, you will probably be running to the bathroom more frequently, but your body (and specifically your kidneys) will thank you infinitely! Going to the restroom that much more often and increasing your sweat will help rid your body of waste. It will also reduce your likelihood of getting a Urinary Tract Infection and/or kidney stones.
- Reduces Fatigue: water will leave you feeling more alert and energized. Your brain, like the rest of your body, is mostly water, so keeping it hydrated will help you stay focused and more alert. Dehydration can leave you feeling foggy. You may not need that late afternoon caffeine or snack, you may just be dehydrated!
- Cure Headaches: I have always had chronic headaches, so I can attest to this one firsthand. When my body’s equilibrium is off for whatever reason, I will likely get a headache. When I don’t drink enough during, or after a long run, or when I run in extreme heat and don’t properly hydrate after, my head is pounding for the rest of the day. Lots of headaches are a result of dehydration, so before you reach for that bottle of Ibuprofen, take down a few glasses of water and wait a bit to see if your headache goes away.
- Saves Money: water is free! All you need is a reusable water bottle and you’re set. It will make you feel and look better than your sugar laden sports drink, iced tea, or soda pop. (I suggest a glass water bottle because plastic ones often have toxins. I use a Nalgene because it is large and much lighter to travel with each week for work).
Some people say they don’t like the taste of water. If that is you, perhaps try adding fresh squeezed citrus juice to it, or fresh fruit or herbs. If drinking carbonated water is appealing, do that! (Just make sure it doesn’t have added sugars or sodium). In the summer I love drinking water with some fresh squeezed lemon and basil leaves. Cucumber is another of my favorite deliciously refreshing additives also.
There are differing opinions on how much water someone should consume daily, based on the hue of urine, but I say generally more is better than less. You probably don’t want to be drinking 2 gallons a day because it can cause your blood to become dangerously thin. Aim for 2 liters, or 65 fluid ounces, per day. Spread your intake out throughout the day. You may need to increase the amount if you’re sweating a lot or drinking other drinks with a diuretic effect (caffeinated beverages, but if you’re one of the MANY people who drink 1 or 2 glasses a day, any more than that is better!
Most people are chronically dehydrated, so don’t be one of them anymore! You will feel so much more refreshed!
What are your New Years resolutions? Drink more water? 🙂