Water Benefits 101

When I was a kid, neighborhood moms mixed pitcher after pitcher of sweet fruity-flavored Kool-Aid for thirsty growing bodies.  As they handed out the paper Dixie cups of our generation’s drink, I was the kid asking for a cup of water instead.  The request would be met with surprise, and some good-natured cajoling to try the flavor being offered, but even then, I knew I’d still be thirsty, my need for water unquenched, if I accepted. 

Not to say that I didn’t drink the Kool-Aid, because I did.  After all, I couldn’t be the only kid on the block without a cool grape ‘stash.

What I knew instinctively as a kid, I’ve come to factually understand as an adult: water is essential and more important than many think in keeping your body operating on optimal levels. 

Good quality water is the holy grail of all things good that you can do to get and stay healthy.

What’s The Big Deal?

Most everyone has heard that our bodies are comprised mostly of water, but did you know that it accounts for approximately 60% of your total body weight?  Every single system in our body depends on water in order to function properly.  Water carries nutrients to cells.  Water flushes out toxins.  Water keeps moist things moist (eyes, lungs, throat, and regions south).  Water keeps skin looking younger.  Water helps you think more clearly.  It’s akin to a wonder drug, without the distasteful side effects (you know the commercials I’m talking about).

We are constantly using our body’s available supply of water.  We breath, we sweat (fine, some of you glow), we urinate, we poop (um, everybody poops), and some of us even spittle a little when we talk excitedly. 

Say it, Don’t Spray it! 

Because of this usage, it is vital that we replenish what we use on a daily basis.

When you don’t get enough of the fine H2O, dehydration is the next step.  Dehydration is sneaky, because there aren’t many overt signs to warn you it’s starting.  It comes in stealth-like with its night-vision goggles on, ready to pounce. 

Once it gets a foothold, dehydration leads to a noticeable drop in energy and necessary physical and mental functions become compromised, which means your entire body suffers along with your mood.  Tired folks = cranky folks.

MayoClinic.com backs me up:

“Lack of water can lead to dehydration, a condition that occurs when you don’t have enough water in your body to carry out normal functions. Even mild dehydration can drain your energy and make you tired.”

The thing to remember is this: We need water in order to function at our best. 

How Much Do You Need?

Doctors still pretty much agree that everyone needs at least 8-9 cups a day.  Of course there are variables that would indicate if you need more than that, mostly environment temps and conditions and activity levels.  It’s the how to get those cups that leads to confusion.

Some of this intake comes from the foods you eat and the things you drink.  If you’re unsure you’re meeting the minimum daily requirements, a reliable time-tested method is to observe your urine output and the color of that urine (urine, urine, urine!).

Mayoclinic.com describes it perfectly:

“…if you drink enough fluid so that you rarely feel thirsty and produce 1.5 liters (6.3 cups) or more of colorless or slightly yellow urine a day, your fluid intake is probably adequate.”

While there is no need to actually catch your output in your  measuring cup (but if you do, I think I speak for all of us in saying that you can keep that info to yourself), the bottom line is you should be taking more than 2-3 bathroom breaks a day and observing nothing brighter than a stick of butter in the bowl (this time salted or unsalted doesn’t matter). 

Yes, I know the darker/brighter the pee, the prettier it is, but in this case we want a washed out tinge, nothing more.

What Now?

The easiest way to make sure you don’t forget to replenish your fluids is to keep a water bottle handy.  It can be as easy as grabbing a few bottles from a grocery pack, or the greener route, keep a filled reusable bottle nearby.

However you decide to remind yourself, the important thing is to follow through.  Give yourself a week or two and concentrate on diligently rehydrating your body and see if it doesn’t make a marked difference in your life, in your energy levels.

Take it from a gal who has been drinking water as her drink of choice her entire life; when you don’t hydrated properly, it shows. 

Drink up!

 

Next: Water Benefits: (H)201

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Comments

  1. And did you know, dehydration in older people is often misdiagnosed as arthritis, because joints hurt when they’re not properly hydrated? So important for everyone to get enough water.

  2. Yes, do “grab… a few bottles from a grocery pack.” But then, REFILL THEM FROM THE TAP! Those damn bottles are worse than plastic grocery bags for wasting resources and polluting the landscape. Also, having earned the label “Mr. Cheap,” I have a real loathing of spending a buck a pint for water.

    • Mrs. Tucker says:

      LOL! I have three bottle, strategically planted around the house, that are continuously filled up. It’s not cheap…it’s SMART! The only reason I even buy the pack is because they are the perfect size to slip into my sports bra when running. Wait. TMI?!

  3. I became so great at drinking water during my pregnancy and when I first had my baby. When I first started breastfeeding I was ALWAYS thirsty. Now that I’m almost seven months in I guess my body has adjusted or something, and I find myself halfway through the day without even a sip of water. This is definitely something I need to work on! So much great info here that I needed to hear!

    • Mrs. Tucker says:

      My habit is to start the day with a glass of water, even before coffee. That way, I know the rest of the day will follow. I shuddered thinking you could make it halfway thru a day without even a sip. While getting all one’s water thru an actual glass of water isn’t necessary, I’m hoping you substituted other great sources. Glad this resonated with you!

  4. Can’t drink anything but water or sweet tea. The rest gives me heart burn!

  5. Great post! I too remember the days of drinking tons and tons of kool aide, I was the kid who drank it every chance I got 🙂
    I am a teacher and my classroom get so dry this time of year so I have a huge water bottle that I drink from all day (refilling it at least once). I’ve read that drinking water is a great way to “clean out the pipes”.
    Thanks!
    Sami

  6. I definitely liked kool aid when I was a kid! But now I know I need to drink more water…thanks for the reminder! I think it’s something we need to hear once in a while!

  7. Mommy on Demand says:

    I love water!! I drink so much! Its always a nice reminder to hear the benefits of water! Would love for you come and share at my linky party http://mommyondemand.com/create-bake-6/

  8. Great info! I was drinking 4 19 oz. bottles a day while losing weight and now if I drink one it is a lot. I have unfortunately substituted decaf coffee along the way. Thanks for this reminder! I always have a 35 pack of water in the house….I just don’t go through it very fast!

    • Mrs. Tucker says:

      When I don’t drink enough water throughout the day, by the evening I feel it. It’s a cumulative effort/effect that, as you know, is worth it.

  9. I became severely dehydrated while pregnant and quickly discovered the benefits of drinking water…before I’d hardly drink anything during the day. After majorly upping my water intake I found I had SO much more energy and felt great, even in the last trimester. I’ve found that drinking a big glass first thing in the morning makes me feel fresher and more alert than my usual cup of tea.

    • Mrs. Tucker says:

      While I agree with everything you said and do (like that big cup first thing in the morning…I do that too), I haven’t given up my morning coffee. I looooove it so much!

  10. Carrie This Home says:

    I always make sure to get my coffee in every day. I’d be much better off to do that with water instead! You just inspired me to drink more water! Thanks for sharing this at Frugal Crafty Home Blog Hop.

  11. Thank you so much for sharing with Wednesday’s Adorned From Above Link Party. Have a great week.
    Debi and Charly @ Adorned From Above

Trackbacks

  1. […] The last time we talked about water, I left you with this advice: DRINK UP!  […]

  2. […] talking about the cold, don’t forget about hydration, even through the winter months.  Water Benefits #1 and Water Benefits […]

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