Water is a ‘magic elixir’. A nurse recently said this to me during a quick conversation about the importance of hydration during pregnancy. Most of us know that drinking water is vitally important to our health, yet it tends to slip our minds to keep track of how much we are taking in daily. Why is it so hard? Most of the time it’s because we’ve been given the impression that we have to strictly stick to water to hydrate properly, when the fact is, consuming other fluids and some foods can help us meet that quota.
How much water am I supposed to drink?
Usually the first question people ask themselves is: What is the recommended daily amount of water? The traditional recommendation is following the ‘8x8 rule’ - eight 8oz glasses a day. The fact remains that people come in all different shapes and sizes, with different hydration needs. Following the general 8x8 rule is a helpful start - but gauge yourself and how you’re feeling. If you feel like you need more, drink more. Just remember to keep in mind, that other fluids such as milk, tea, and juices do count to helping you stay hydrated!
What are three reasons why water is so important to the body?
Water is extremely important for the body to function properly. Most sources cite that the human body is made up of about 60% water. The following are three main reasons why water is so important to the body:
- It’s an essential component to help carry nutrients, oxygen, and flush toxins and waste from our cells.
- Our major organ systems are dependant on water to function! From respiration to digestion, replenishing the fluids that our body flushes out is vital to keep things running in top shape!
- Without enough water in our bodies, dehydration can set in. It doesn’t take much for even mild dehydration to occur. This can zap the body of energy and cause feelings of tiredness to set in. Signs and symptoms to look out for? A decrease in urination or urine that is more yellow than usual, cramping, constipation, headaches, increased thirst, and dizziness are just a few.
What are the health benefits of water?
So what exactly are the health benefits to drinking more water aside from what our bodies need it for? The benefits are bountiful! For example: Water helps to boost your metabolism, allowing your digestive system to function the way it’s supposed to. It can also help you feel more full when you drink plenty of water during meals, which can help support weight loss. Drinking water when the onset of a headache or migraine occurs can help alleviate the pain because dehydration is often the cause. Finally, water also helps keep your skin hydrated, which can alleviate itchiness, flakiness, and help soothe symptoms of skin conditions that often cause excessively dry skin.
So bottom’s up, and make a toast to water; nature’s magic elixir.