WHY DRINK WATER?
Water has so many important roles in the body. It provides a medium for our cells to carry out the necessary functions such as nutrient metabolism or other enzymatic reactions. For one, it helps to maintain a healthy body temperature. It also lubricates and cushions joints, protects your tissues and spine, and helps to rid toxins through urine, sweat, and other bodily functions. It filters through the kidneys, respiratory system, and digestive system to eliminate waste and ensure proper digestion. Drinking enough water can even ease constipation and prevent kidney stones. It can help you to feel satiated after a meal, keep you alert throughout the day, and keep you hydrated during physical activity.
Now, we know you probably already knew a lot of this. So what’s holding you back? Many clients we work with struggle to meet the recommended amount of water for their needs for a wide variety of reasons. We’re here to offer some of our most effective hydration tips that have worked in our personal lives and been helpful for our clients.
HOW MUCH WATER SHOULD YOU DRINK?
Before you can make sure you’re well hydrated, you should probably know how much water you need. A general recommendation is typically 8, 8 oz. glasses of water per day, which is about 64 oz. in total. Though 64 oz. a day is a good recommendation for how much water to drink, it is not a specific guideline for everyone. Some people may need more or less water for different reasons.
One of the most obvious needs for additional water is for those who exercise. Any time you work up a sweat, you should make sure you drink enough water to account for fluid losses. Hot or humid environments also increase fluid loss, so make sure to stay hydrated in those conditions. If you are sick and experience vomiting, diarrhea, or fever, make sure to drink extra water to recover from the fluid loss that these symptoms/conditions bring. Fluid needs also increase during pregnancy or for women who are breastfeeding. If you would like to know what your exact needs are, try this fluid needs calculator or discuss your fluid requirements with your physician or Registered Dietitian.
WHAT ARE SOME TIPS FOR DRINKING MORE WATER?
We thought you’d never ask. Here are our ten tips to getting more water in throughout the day:
- Invest in a water reusable water bottle that you love.
- Carry a water bottle with you everywhere! To the store, to school, to work. Buy one that’s easy to carry around.
- Add fruit to flavor your water to give it some spunk like our Herb Infused H20 recipe. You can also try unsweetened herbal tea!
- Keep a fresh pitcher of water ready in the refrigerator so you have some nice, cold water ready to go.
- Switch out that soda with sparkling water.
- Set an alarm on your phone every so often to remind you to sip.
- Start each morning with one cup of water. Then have one cup before and after each meal (7 cups down, 1 to go!)
- Try downloading an app to track your daily water intake like Daily Water Free.
- Place cups of water around the house as a reminder. Have a cup of water in the living room, kitchen, bedroom (I even have one in my bathroom!)
- Eat foods that have a high water content to contribute to your overall hydration like cucumber, watermelon, zucchini, or grapefruit.
A good test to know if you are hydrated enough may be the color of your urine. If your urine is light yellow or colorless, you are likely getting plenty of water. However, if you find that your urine is a dark yellow, you may need to fill that cup back up.
Any new ideas for hydration jumping out at you? Try one out today and tell us about it. Also share any other creative ideas that work for you in the comments below!