Here’s a hint: It makes up 60% of your bodyweight. And you need to keep replenishing it!
It’s no secret that you MUST drink a fair amount of water every day.
Since you also lose large amounts of water every day through urination, bowel movements, perspiration, skin evaporation, and breathing, you need to replenish what’s lost or you’ll become dehydrated. In fact, your brain triggers your thirst mechanism if you don’t replace water quickly enough.
PS – Even though it’s a liquid, if you drink alcohol, it interferes with the communication between your brain and your kidneys, sometimes causing you to excrete too much fluid. That’s why you may feel thirsty, even if you’ve drunk alcohol.
Many people like the idea that drinking a lot of water can help you lose weight. Be aware though, that drinking water doesn’t directly lead to losing weight, but it’s often a side benefit.
Indirectly, when you drink more water, you’re less likely to eat more calories. Fewer calories also usually means eating less sodium, saturated fat, bad cholesterol, and sugar. In fact, according to WebMD, one extra cup of water a day will save you 68 calories. Three extra cups will save you 205 calories, which is as many calories as you would burn by walking 2.5 miles.
However, don’t think you can eat more, or sit on your butt more, just because you’re drinking more water. It simply means you’re filling up on water instead of on food.
Another way to help you lose weight as a result of increased water intake is to choose foods with higher water content – such as fruits, vegetables, broth-based soups, oatmeal, and beans – that are healthier and more filling.
When you’re exercising, you have to be intentional about replacing lost fluids with water. In addition to slaking your thirst, you also energize your muscles. Strenuous exercise can deplete the electrolytes in your cells, which leads to muscle fatigue. To perform at your best, drink more water!
Want to keep looking young? Your skin contains a lot of water and will begin to look dry and wrinkled if you don’t stay hydrated.
And let’s get “down and dirty” to talk about how important water is for removing waste products from your body.
Your kidneys need plenty of water in order to clean out and eliminate toxins and waste. When you don’t have enough water in your system, urine concentration, color, and odor increase because the kidneys hold onto it longer. And kidney stones are often a result of not drinking enough water.
Feeling constipated? If you’re not drinking enough water, your colon pulls water from your stool to remain hydrated… and you end up with constipation. Drink water and eat fiber to keep things moving!
In addition, adequate hydration:
- Keeps your temperature normal
- Protects all your tissues and organs
- Lubricates your joints
But not everyone loves to drink water. So how do you make sure you drink enough?
- Squeeze in a little fresh lemon, lime, strawberry, or cucumber. Mix up the flavors in your water bottle and add variety to your life!
- Drink water with every meal
- In fact, drink water BEFORE every meal and fill up your belly before sitting down
- Carry around a refillable bottle of water – keep one in your car, in your bag, at your desk, etc. – and refill it with fresh whatever whenever you get a chance. (Side note: washable refillable bottles not only save you money, but are also MUCH better for the environment than disposable plastic bottles…)
- Eat more fruits and vegetables that are high in water content