Water is the most important nutrient in the body - tips on how to stay hydrated
We can go up to 8 weeks without food, but only days without water. Water makes up 55 - 60% of our total body mass which in an average adult, equates to 10 - 13 gallons of water. Water has many important functions, such as:
- improves oxygen delivery to cells
- enables cellular hydration
- transports nutrients
- moistens oxygen for easier breathing
- regulates body temperature
- cushions bones and joints and lubricates joints
- removes wastes and flushes toxins
- improves cell-to-cell communication
- maintains normal electrical properties of cells
- helps the body's natural healing process
The body can produce about 8% of its daily water needs through metabolic processes, the remaining 92% must be ingested through foods and beverages.
Water is the most common nutritional deficiency in the American population. We are not ingesting enough water and drinking too many diuretics which causes dehydration. If the body's water content drops by as little as 2%, it will cause fatigue. If it drops 10%, it will cause digestive, cardiovascular, immune and musculoskeletal problems.
Early signs of dehydration include:
- fatigue, anxiety, irritability, depression, cravings, cramps, headaches, hunger
Mature signs of dehydration include:
- heartburn, back pain, joint pain, migraines, fibromyalgia, constipation, colitis
To calculate the appropriate daily intake of water, use the following formula:
Body Weight / 2 = the minimum # of ounces we should drink each day
100 ounces being the top as we should not drink more than that to prevent flushing of minerals and electrolytes from the body.
If you drink diuretics, add 12 - 16 ounces of water for every 8-ounce diuretic beverage.
Do you find it hard to drink enough water during the day? Do you hardly ever feel thirsty? Or do you just crave a little more flavor in your water? A great way to get more water in is to add lemon and/or mint. It is very refreshing and tastes very good.
You can also get an infuser water bottle and try different combinations of flavors until you find your favorite.
Here are some combinations you can start with:
Cucumber Lime Mint
Refreshing and energizing infusion water that will cleanse your system.
Antioxidant infused water that helps with digestion, detoxifies liver and increases metabolism.
This combination will help fight colds and other viruses and will boost your immune system.
Antioxidant infused water with refreshing flavor.
Mixed Berries Lime
Vitamin and antioxidant infused water with energizing tangy flavor.
Vitamin C infused water that will revive your metabolism and boost your immune system.
Happy hydrating and one more thing, remember to find a good source of water and sip the water throughout the day to ensure proper absorption.