The importance of proper hydration.
Why is it so important to drink enough water? It is the most vital source of energy in our body as the human body is approximately 60- 75% water, or 2/3 of our body weight. Our bodies can only survive for a few days without it. If our body gets dehydrated the function of our organs and tissues fatigue and compensations can occur. Increased cholesterol to prevent water loss from our cells, decreased cell oxygenation and transport of vital nutrients, thicker blood which can elevate blood pressure, skin disorders due to an inability to eliminate toxins, digestive disorders, bladder and kidney infections and/or inflammation due to the accumulation of wastes and toxins that give bacteria the chance to thrive, constipation from inability of the intestines to move waste, joint pain or stiffness from weakened cartilage and slow repair process, weight gain due to hunger confusion, decreased cognition, decreased physical performance, and premature aging resulting in wrinkles are all related to hydration. Wow, that is a lot!
The average adult loses water by breathing, sweating, digestion, urinating, climate and exercise. When you are thirsty you are already dehydrated. The average amount of water one should drink is 8, 8-ounce glasses per day and more if you are active or in varying climates. Start your day with a nice cold glass of water as soon as you get up in the morning. Water intake comes not just from pure water but can come from the foods we eat as well. Whole fruits and vegetables are a good source.
Signs of dehydration:
- Muscle cramps
- Increased thirst
- Fatigue, confusion, or anger
- Dark urine
- Lack of sweat
- Dry eyes or blurry vision
- Poor energy
Here some simple ways you can make sure your getting enough water daily:
- Carry a water bottle with you wherever you go
- Drink a cup before every meal
- Add some fruits and veggies
- Use a straw
- Avoid drinks that add high amounts of sugar and additives
- For every non-water beverage drink 2 cups
- Hydrate before, during and after physical activity
- Fill a gallon jug and make sure you finish it before the day is over
- Keep track of your intake
Foods with high water content:
Check out this Hydration App on the App Store to remind you to drink water!
Physical Therapist Assistant/ Massage Therapist