About more than 60 percent of our bodies comprise water, and hence, adequately recharging ourselves with fluids is essential to maintain optimum health and overall fitness. The role of water in the human body is more than just a thirst quencher; it keeps each part of our bodily system functioning correctly. For example, fluids help flush out waste, transport nutrients in the body, regulate body temperature, assist in the functioning of our brain and muscles, etc.
We lose water in large amounts every day through sweat, breath, urination, and bowel movement. Not drinking enough hydration drinks can leave us dehydrated with several associated issues such as tiredness, dry mouth, dizziness, urinary incontinence, and constipation. Water also maintains the equilibrium of electrolytes that are essential for the functioning of the nervous system, thereby preventing cramps, ligament damage, and stress on the veins.
Conventionally, it is advisable to consume at least 8 glasses or two liters of water per day. However, the amount of water you need per day can vary based on your activity level, the climate you live in, your age, health condition, etc. The US-based Institute of Medicine has set the amount at 2.7 liters of water a day for women and 3.7 liters for men. This refers to the total daily fluid intake from foods, plain water, and other beverages.
At OneFitPlus, we often encounter customer issues related to poor digestion, slow metabolism, joint aches, and constant fatigue. We figured out that the major reason behind such problems is not drinking enough water. In our busy lives, we go long hours without good hydration drinks and have copious amounts of tea, coffee, and soda, causing more harm than good. Our simple approach towards weight loss and overall good health has hydration as a major component.
Let's take a look at the numerous health benefits of drinking water:
Water Helps in Relieving Joint and Muscle Pain
Water is great for physical strength and endurance. Consistent hydration keeps our joints and muscles lubricated and energized, improving their performance. Fluids supply necessary nutrients and remove waste to the cells in our muscles and joints, making them suppler and pain-free. The right balance of water and electrolytes in our muscles keeps them full of energy and vitality. We should especially make sure to hydrate ourselves before and after a workout.
Water Helps in Proper Digestion of Food
If your body is well hydrated, there is smooth movement in your gastrointestinal tract. Adequate fluid intake ensures that you have a regular and comfortable bowel movement and are free from constipation. In addition to bad eating habits, insufficient water consumption results in the colon extracting water from the stool, making us constipated. Resultant constipation can lead to a host of other problems. Water and other fluids also break down the food, helping you absorb the necessary nutrients.
Drinking Enough Water Improves Kidney Health
Forget about the fancy detox diets and just focus on keeping up your intake of water and other fluids. They play a considerable role in flushing out toxins, waste, and bacteria from our bodies. Our kidneys need a good water supply and other fluids to move waste products in and out of our cells. Toxins such as blood urea nitrogen are processed by our kidneys to flush out as urine. For such vital functions, we need to provide our kidneys the necessary amount of hydration. Water also keeps away kidney stones and urinary tract infections.
Drinking an Adequate Amount of Water can Help lose Weight
Yes, it's true! Water helps you in shedding those stubborn pounds as well. Drinking water consistently can boost sluggish metabolism and enhance the body's ability to burn calories. Several times, we mistake our thirst cues as hunger cues. Having a non-calorie drink like water in addition to water-rich fruits and vegetables can regulate our appetite. Also, if you consume a few glasses of water before having a meal, you are unlikely to overeat.
Water Helps Improve Cardiovascular Health
Our heart is continuously pumping blood, and it cannot do this job efficiently without adequate hydration. The blood volume in our body lowers if we are dehydrated, and consequently, our heart has to work harder to bring enough oxygen to the brain, muscles, and other organs/tissues. In addition, dehydration can constrict blood vessels and thicken blood, causing high blood pressure. Our blood contains mainly water, and thus, we need to regularly consume fluids to keep it moving through our system and make our heart functioning properly.
Drink Sufficient amount of Water for Glowing Skin
Inadequate consumption of water can make our skin look pale, dry, and wrinkly. Water fills the space between skin cells, plumping up the skin's surface, reducing fine lines and wrinkles. Having enough fluids can keep our skin elastic, moist, shiny, and supple. Those suffering from skin issues such as acne and dermatitis also get major relief from increasing their fluid intake. Proper hydration makes us look and feel younger for a long time.
Water Helps in Regulating Body Temperature
Sufficient water consumption helps to regulate our body temperature during both summers and winters. It keeps us both cool and warm internally and prevents us from falling sick. The blood vessels in our body expand and contract in response to the temperature outside, and proper hydration keeps a check on that.
Water Enhances Brain Function
Not drinking enough fluids can impair the proper functioning of our brain, leaving a negative impact on our mood, memory, and concentration levels. Besides, dehydration can cause frequent headaches, fatigue, and anxiety. You can improve your cognitive performance by upping your fluid intake. It's imperative to stay hydrated for our overall health and wellness.
We must increase the amount of liquid we have daily to see positive outcomes immediately. If you get bored of having plain water, you can change things up by mixing lemon juice, mint leaves, cucumber, fruits, or unsweetened tea in it. Handy ways to stay hydrated include always carrying a reusable water bottle, ordering water instead of soda at restaurants, and including water in your daily bedtime routine. Staying hydrated is simple, easy and should be included as a lifestyle habit to improve our health.
Expert dieticians at OneFitPlus recommend that we must limit the consumption of tea, coffee, soda, and alcohol as they dehydrate our bodies. Instead, we may consume fluids in the form of soups, broths, fruit-infused water, fresh fruit juice, milk, etc., and water-rich fruits and vegetables such as cucumber, lettuce, cantaloupe, and watermelon to keep our hydration level up.
An excellent way to gauge if we have enough fluids is to look at the color of our urine. If our urine is light or colorless, we are on the right track. However, if our urine is dark yellow or amber, we might be dehydrated. Hydration is essential not just for our survival but for the efficient functioning of each part of our body. Even mild dehydration can leave us exhausted and impair our physical and mental performance.