If I could convince people of one thing to change their level of health and fitness, it would be to drink more water. Headaches, fatigue and bloating can all be a result of not drinking enough water and could easily be alleviated by more intake of the straight up stuff.
Most people are walking around in a constant state of dehydration and don’t even know it. Dehydration to even small levels can cause headaches and extreme fatigue. Tired, cranky, not feeling your best during the day? Drink more water!
When you don’t eat enough food, the body thinks it is starving and will hold onto all the calories it can. Similarly, if the body doesn’t get enough water, it will hold onto every drop and holds it in the outside cells, causing a bloated appearance. Reduce water retention by drinking more water!
As an added bonus, water helps metabolize stored body fat! Increasing your water intake can help reduce fat deposits. Your entire body needs water to function properly, including your kidneys and liver. If the kidneys do not have enough water to function properly, part of their job is put onto the liver. Metabolizing stored fat into usable energy for the body is one of the liver’s primary functions. If the liver is doing the job of the kidneys, it cannot do its job of metabolizing fat properly.
Drinking water also helps the body get rid of waste. TMI? Perhaps, but it’s important. To function normally, your body needs water to help flush out the waste. While losing weight, this increases and drinking plenty of water will help flush out that waste.
You can drink other things besides water (though I don’t recommend high calorie drinks, myself, I’d rather eat my calories) but make sure you also get the water in. Drinking diet pop, or other flavoured drinks are a poor replacement for actual water. Most people know tea and coffee are diuretics, so the water in your coffee and tea doesn’t count.
So how much water is enough? The average recommendation of eight 8 ounce glasses a day is only a minimum. That amount should increase:
– If you have excess body fat to lose (additional glass for every 25lbs of excess weight)
– If you exercise-before, during and after!
– On hot and dry days
The easiest way to monitor how much water you drink is to fill a bottle with a measured amount, carry it with you and use it to drink from or pour glasses of water from. A one litre bottle (33.8 ounces for USA readers) is a great way to start. I drink 4L (about a gallon) of water on an average day. Using a 1L bottle makes that easy to track.
So, let’s drink to a healthier, happier body, with a fresh, clear class of water!