We all know that drinking water is important, sometimes, however, we need to be reminded exactly we we must remain hydrated.
How much should we drink?
The amount of water that we need varies from person to person. The general rule is that you multiply your body weight by 0.0333 and this will give you the amount in litres to drink. For example, if you weigh 65kg then your water intake per day is 2.2 Litres.An easy way to tell if you’ve drunk enough water is if your urine is a light colour (clear to very pale yellow). Your urine will be a dark colour if you need to drink more.
Objective tests for hydration include the color of your urine (it should be light colored) as well as a blood test.
When you exercise, your water requirements will increase. You will need to drink more water during and after training and this will help maintain energy and aid in recovery. Also, water makes your metabolism burn calories 3% faster!
If you are trying to lose weight, water will help you achieve your goals. Besides helping you burn calories, water can slow down your hunger sensation. The sensations of being hungry and thirsty are triggered by the same part of the brain. This means that often when you are hungry, you might actually be thirsty. Try having a glass of water when you feel the pangs of hunger, wait 10 minutes and then see if you still crave a greasy hamburger!
After you’ve had your glass of water, and you find yourself still hungry, aim to eat food that has high water content. Such foods are fruit and vegetables, soups, smoothies, salads, fruit salads and veggie sticks. Steer clear of heavy, salt laden foods such as anything that is processed or over cooked.
Besides weight loss there are a swag of other ailments that water can abate. Water helps alleviate headaches, helps reduce blood pressure, helps reduce cholesterol, decreases the risk of some cancers, reduces your risk of getting kidney stones, cushions and lubricates your joints and muscles and reduces your risk of disease and infection. Water can also help with depression, heartburn, ulcers, diabetes, asthma cramps, dizziness and back pain. Let’s not forget that drinking plenty of water will help rehydrate sun-weathered skin.
Sometimes it’s difficult to find ways to drink water and many people find plain water very boring to drink. Here are some tips for making water drinking more pleasurable.
• Get fun to go containers – Always have water with you or in the car. Get good size, fun colored containers. The larger the container, the fewer the refills.
• Use straws, add ice and fresh lemon juice. Make this glass of water feel like a treat.
• It takes 21 days to make or break a habit. Change your daily habits now! Wake up and go straight for a glass of water. Make it a rule to order water (with or without lemon) when you go out to lunch instead of a diet soft drink or even mineral or soda waters which can be high in salt.
• Always have cold water on hand ready to drink. Make it easy. It is always easier to make the right choices when you have planned ahead and are prepared.
• Try herbal teas or hot water with added juice. Add ginger for improved circulation or honey and lemon for a tasty immune booster.
• Have a shot glass on your desk at work. And on the hour every hour, down two to four shots!