We all know we need to drink water, but just how important is water for our bodies and health? The short answer is EXTREMELY, as in, we cannot live without it! Water makes up about 75% of the human body, 95% of the human brain, 82% of the human blood, and 90% of the human lungs! If that alone doesn’t tell you that we must replenish our water supply constantly to prevent from dehydration, we can talk about all of the major roles that water plays in our system.
To say the least, if we do not have water for a few days, we would simply die. Just as a car needs fuel to run, our body needs water to function, and every single cell and organ depends on water to function.
The major functions in our bodies that depend on water are flushing out of toxic chemicals from our system, otherwise the wastes build up and cause toxicity, which leads to illnesses and other disorders associated with too many toxins in the system. Water is an essential lubricant that helps cushion and protect delicate areas like the brain, spinal cord, and eyes from shock and trauma. It aids in digestion, and lubricates our joints and cartilages. During dehydration, there is more risk for friction, causing joint, knee, and back pain that can lead to injury and arthritis. Our body temperature regulation also greatly depends on water through perspiration, where water evaporates through our skin and cools the body. Also, because the body is made up of about 75% water, and water takes time to change its temperature and stores heat well, it is a natural temperature regulator. Without water, both proteins and carbohydrates are useless to the body, as one of its functions is also enabling chemical reactions to occur that allow proteins and carbohydrates to be absorbable and usable by the body. These two nutrients are vital to us, they provide energy and are needed for growth and development and a healthy functioning body. Because our blood is made up of about 82% water is essential in the transportation system and carries nutrients as well as oxygen throughout the body. All the nutrients we eat get broken down and dissolve in water (become water soluble) during digestion. Water then enables the nutrients to pass through the intestinal wall, into the blood and circulatory system, and is then carried throughout the body and distributed to all of the cells and organs. Water plays a part in every body process which includes breathing, muscle movement, digestion, and waste removal, all of which would not be possible otherwise, and the body would not function. In addition to all of these functions that water serves, it also plays a huge role in preventing disease, so drink up!
So the question is, how do we ensure that we are getting adequate amounts of water? What we need to do is drink more water! Remind yourself of its importance, and constantly keep a glass of water or bottle of water nearby. To keep your body from getting dehydrated, you can also cut down on caffeine, alcohol, and other beverages that contain sugar. These types of drinks do not hydrate us, and actually lower our water supply! It has been suggested to drink about 8, 8oz glasses of water a day, but that amount varies from individual to individual. If you are physically active, live in a warm climate, sweat a lot, or it is the summertime which tends to be hot in most places, you should be consuming a lot more. It is also important that the water you consume be as clean as possible.
A good indicator for whether you are well hydrated is having urine that is a very light, mostly clear color. On the other hand, if you experience dry skin, dry or sticky mouth, irritability or confusion, skin that doesn’t bounce back when you pinch it, trouble focusing, trouble sleeping, fatigue, headaches, and/or unquenchable thirst, These are signs of dehydration! Statistically, “an estimated 75% of Americans have mild, chronic dehydration! So chances are if you experience these symptoms you may be one of those people and should address this issue as soon as possible!
Finally we just wanted to touch on a few more reasons to motivate everyone to stay hydrated!
Drinking water increases energy! Because your brain is mostly made of water, keeping it hydrated at all times helps you think and concentrate, and stay more focused and alert!
Because drinking water fills your belly up, it also reduces unnecessary hunger that is often confused with your body telling you it’s actually thirsty, raises your metabolism, and helps you maintain a healthy weight!
Drinking water also reduces your risk for kidney stones and UTI’s as it gets rid of wastes as you sweat and urinate! It aids in digestion, and staying regular by preventing constipation!
Water’s natural hydrating properties also contribute to great skin! It moisturizes it, and keeps it soft, and smooth!
You are also less likely to get sick if you drink sufficient amounts of water, as it helps keep your immune system strong and fight against common illnesses!
Headaches and migraines are very frequently the result of dehydration, so drinking water is a natural remedy to help relieve and prevent them!
If you stay hydrated, you are doing your body wonders which in turn will translate with you looking and feeling great, it’s as simple as that!