So we all know that water is good for us, and everyone talks about getting in at least 3.5L per day. But why? What does water really do for us?
- Can affect your mood, causing you to feel irritable or ‘grumpy’
- Can make you more sensitive to pain
- Can cause the central nervous system to not work effectively, muscular reaction and coordination to decrease significantly, strength and endurance to drop and even cramps can occur
- Can affect your memory, causing you to be more forgetful
- Reduces your cognitive and motor skills
ADDITIONAL BENEFITS TO DRINKING WATER
1. Increases brain power and provides energy.
Water is required by every cell in the body and important for all body functions. It helps transport oxygen and nutrients critical to the brain for optimal function, whilst providing cushioning and lubrication to the brain tissue.
2. Promotes healthy weight management and weight loss.
Your brain isn’t the only part of your body to feel the positive impact of staying hydrated. Water aides in the removal of fat by-products and also helps you feel more full. Not only does this act as a natural appetite suppressant, but it can also improve your metabolism.
3. Flush out waste
You’ve probably heard the expression, “sweat it out.” Water consumption helps your body flush out waste through sweat and urination. This also prevents kidney stones and protects you from urinary tract infections.
4. Improves your complexion
It’s understandable that if your body is composed of 60% water, dehydration will harm your skin. Your skin is an organ, and water is important for organ function. If your skin is not getting the sufficient amount of water, the lack of hydration will present itself by turning your skin dry, tight and flaky. Dry skin has less resilience and is more prone to wrinkling.
5. Boosts immune system
Want to know the easiest way to stay healthy during the cold and flu season? Drink more water! One of the most common overlooked benefits of drinking water is a healthy immune system.
6. Prevents Headaches
One of the most common symptoms of dehydration is headaches. Drinking water helps prevent and relieve headaches often caused by dehydration.
7. Prevents cramps and sprains
It’s no secret that dehydration leads to cramping. But did you know that hydrated muscles are also less prone to sprains? Develop healthy hydration habits and you’ll be more flexible, less likely to experience sprained ankles, and less likely to be sore after that next killer workout.
HOW MUCH WATER SHOULD YOU DRINK PER DAY?
For non-exercisers, the existing recommended guidelines that tell you to drink two to three litres (0.5 to 0.75 US gallons) a day. However, if you’re active and sweating frequently, you have a significantly higher demand for water – at least 3.5 – 4 litres daily. Your increased metabolic activity lets you excrete more liquid (I’m looking at you, sweaty-selfie share-ers). Even little dehydration can lead to serious losses of performance and a dehydration of 2% of your body weight can even cause permanent damages.
Before, during and after exercising, your demand for water increases even more. Therefore, drink at least one litre (33 fl. oz.) about 90 minutes before your workout to keep your muscles hydrated. .
After your workout, you should also drink at least 500mL / half a liter (17 fl. oz.) to support regeneration. Water helps to remove waste products such as lactic acid from the muscles which are produced during exercise, and helps to regenerate the muscle cells with nutrients such as proteins and carbohydrates.
To track your water intake for the day, use a refillable glass or stainless water bottle that has an exact liquid measurement (mine is 600mL / 20oz).
- Calculate how many of those bottles you need to drink each day (for me, 600mL x 7 bottles = 4.2L) and wrap that amount of elastic bands around your bottle.
- When you’re finished a bottle and refill it, slide an elastic band down towards the bottom so you see how many you have left for the day.
- Try to space out your water consumption as evenly as possible throughout the day, and set “hydration alarms” on your phone as a reminder if need be!
And if you ever lose your hair elastic, know that you have a stash ready at your finger tips. Stay hydrated!!