8 tips to help you drink more water
We are often told of the benefits of drinking water – yet many of us still don’t fully understand the importance of keeping hydrated. On the flip side there are still some people who either still do not like water, or find it difficult to drink water regularly. Water has many functions in the body:
- Water is the primary building block of cells
- Water acts as an insulator it regulates your internal body temperature
- Water is needed to metabolise proteins and carbohydrates used as food
- Water is the primary component of saliva, used to digest carbohydrates and aid in swallowing food
- Water keeps your joints lubricated
- Water insulates your brain, spinal cord and organs it also acts as a shock absorber
- Water is used to flush waste and toxins from the body via urine and sweat
I have often seen participants turn up with a chemically laced beverage loaded with sugar pertaining to be a healthy sports drink. When the drink is discussed they seem adamant in their belief that it is suitable for consumption during exercise – this is simply clever marketing. Some of these drinks can make you more thirsty, dehydrate you and give you and unwanted sugar rush.
Many fitness experts write about the benefits of water demystifying assumptions about sports drinks. Still many people find it difficult to drink the required minimum 2 lts of water a day for the body to function properly.
If you think you need to be drinking more water, here are some tips to help you increase your fluid intake and reap the benefits of water:
1. Taste: If you don’t like the taste of water you can add a slice of lemon, lime or orange or a few sprigs of mint or cucumber. You could also infuse the water for a few hours or overnight with fruit/veg or herbs i.e. peaches, mint, apples or watermelon – yummy
2. Fruit and veg: Remember you can get water from food. Eat more vegetables and fruit their high water content will add to your hydration as about 20% of our fluid intake comes from foods i.e. cucumbers and melons have a high water content
3. Drink regularly: Keep a bottle of water with you in your bag, in your car or at your desk
4. Some like it hot: Some people enjoy sipping warm or hot water which is said to have different properties including stopping cravings. A refreshing alternative is water with a slice of lemon or lime
5. Encouragement: Many people prefer to drink little and often this encourages the consumption of water
6. Routine: Some people do ‘forget’ to drink water for those who do get into a routine ensuring you drink water everyday
7. Bubbles: Sparkling water gives you that extra ‘zing’ and leaves you feeling refreshed. Like still water you can add fruit or try a cocktail stick with suits such as a pineapple chunk, a slice of lime, a slim of apple and a sprig of mint for a flavour boost – yummy
8. Body composition: We know up to 60% of the human adult body is water but did you know the brain and heart are composed of 73% water, and the lungs are about 83% water, muscles and kidneys are 79%, the skin is 64% and the bones are around 31% water. Overweight men and women have less water as they can often be dehydrated. The percent of water depends on your hydration level. People feel thirsty when they have already lost around 2-3% of their body’s water.
So now you have the means and the motivation – pour yourself a glass of water refresh, rejuvenate and revive yourself.