The human body comprises 60% water and human blood is 90% water. Drinking sufficient water every day is extremely important for your health. All the chemical processes of your body take place in water. Fluid loss happens continuously from sweating, breathing and urine excretion and that liquid loss must be replaced. When your liquid consumption does not equal your output, then your body becomes dehydrated. Even slight dehydration can affect physical and mental functions. It is very important that you drink BEFORE you feel thirsty.
There is no universally agreed daily water quantity that is recommended, but a consensus settles on a minimum of 2 litres a day, though this differs from person to person, depending on exercise and metabolism.
Overall benefits can be some of the following:
- Optimum joint lubrication, as cartilage and spine disks contain 80% water. Additionally take 2 turmeric capsules daily for joint inflammation.
- Formation of saliva and mucus. Food digestion is assisted by saliva.
- Being 90% water, blood carries oxygen around the body. Oxygen is a basic human need.
- Essential nutrients need to be circulated to the skin cells and a lack of water makes the skin more vulnerable to wrinkling.
- Brain function and reasoning need water lubrication. Prolonged dehydration will have cognitive effects. Your brain is deeply influenced by your hydration status.
- Body temperature is regulated by water, with water stored in the middle skin layers, coming to the surface as perspiration.
- Limited water intake can affect the digestive tract, which means your bowels will not work properly. This leads to an increase in heartburn and stomach ulcers. (Tip: Try Apple Cider Vinegar capsules from Turmeric Australia for treating heartburn).
- Water flushes the body’s waste products through the colon. We lose fluids through sweat and going to the toilet.
- High blood pressure is decreased by adequate water intake.
- Airways can become restricted by dehydration making asthma and allergies worse.
- If you are supplementing your diet with minerals and nutrients, water will make them more dissolvable to reach the applicable areas of your body.
- It is the kidneys, in tune with the pituitary gland that regulates body fluids. Inadequate water will cause major issues. Older people often have kidney problems, so theoretically they should drink more often.
- Drinking a glass of water prior to a meal can help with overeating.
- To prevent a hangover, drink copious amounts of water after consuming alcohol to flush the alcohol through your system quicker.
- Fluid loss after exercise impairs mood and concentration.
- Minimise the triggering of migraines and headaches by your fluid input.
- Water safeguards your spinal cord and other vulnerable body tissues.
Daily liquid intake can be provided by drink and food, specifically fruit and vegetables. Approximately one-fifth of our daily water requirement comes from food and the rest by drinking fluids. This includes tea, coffee, juice and soft drinks. Soft drinks and juices are NOT recommended as healthy options because of the high sugar content. Interestingly, even our mouth needs lubricating to help you chew and digest food.
Debate exists as to the quality of tap water compared to bottled water, but studies show that bottled water can have less magnesium, potassium and calcium. But then tap water may contain harmful levels of fluoride and chlorine. If you are concerned about chemical levels in your drinking water, do consider buying a good quality water filter to remove any toxins.
At my place of work, we have a urine colour chart on the toilet wall. The range of yellow colours for your urine denotes your hydration levels. Surprisingly, every time I went to the toilet and looked at that chart, I drank a glass of water. What a great chart to have in the family bathroom! Pale yellow urine signified that your body was well hydrated.
Severe hydration leads to dizziness and collapse. How many movies have you seen when the characters are crossing a desert? Death can come quickly in those instances. Have you ever seen a marathon runner collapse from dehydration? The body very quickly enters a crisis stage with a lack of fluid intake. If you are ill with diarrhoea and vomiting, absolutely increase your fluid intake. Flat lemonade is an old remedy. Same goes with a fever. Drink lots of water. Don’t like water? Add a slice of lemon or lime.