Water makes up about 2/3 of who we are and influences all of our body’s processes.
Food and exercise are important for a healthy lifestyle. But don’t forget about water. There are plenty of reasons to drink water. I’ve highlighted six key reasons to stay hydrated below.
Drinking water is essential to our health. From digestion to brain function and mood, water plays in a role in the body’s funtions.
Buy a nice water bottle, start tracking your intake, or try some flavored waters – whatever it takes to get your 8-10 glasses a day in!
6 Reasons to Stay Hydrated
1. Water helps with digestion. By binding with fiber and preventing the colon from pulling water from the stool, enough water prevents constipation.
2. Drinking water improves kidney function. Water helps flush waste products (especially blood urea nitrogen) from the body thus, reducing the burden on the kidneys. Kidneys remove waste from our bodies, help control blood pressure, and balance fluids so its important to keep them functioning properly. (This is why your urine should be clear!)
3. Water helps energize muscles. Without enough water, our cells can’t maintain their balance of fluids or electrolytes, which causes muscle fatigue and decreased performance.
4. Water improves brain function. It helps us to think more clearly and stay focused. Being dehydrated even 2% negatively affects cognitive performance.
5. It can improve your mood. Seriously, water is so important to us that even mild dehydration can negatively impact your mood. This study found that “degraded mood, increased perception of task difficulty, lower concentration, and headache symptoms” were all symptoms of dehydration.
6. Being hydrated can prevent headaches (even migraines). I can tell I’m dehydrated because I get this awful headache at the base of my head that is no fun. Dehydration causes blood volume to drop which then causes less blood and oxygen to flow to the brain and you to have a headache.
Some tips to Help You Drink More
- Always have water with you. Keep a bottle with you at work, in your car, and at home. This prevents you from feeling thirsty but then getting distracted and forgetting to hydrate.
- Invest in a good water bottle you like (straw, handle, insulated) so you’ll be more likely to use it. I like this one for home and when I’m working on the computer because the large size (32oz!) and straw make it convenient for me to keep drinking.
- Choose drinks you like. If you like what you’re tasting, you’ll be more likely to consume more. Adding fruits, herbs, and teas to your water are great ways to add flavors without adding sugar or chemicals. Here’s great flavored water recipes for you to try.