If I had to choose just one piece of nutrition advice to give someone, it would be this:
DRINK MORE WATER
Seriously, it’s the nutrient of life. You can survive up to 3 weeks without food (not something I would recommend…) but without water, you wouldn’t even make it to next week.
Besides being life-sustaining, water has many benefits to the human body. Here are my Top 5:
5. It helps flush waste
Feeling bloated, gassy, constipated? Drinking more water will keep things flowing along your gastrointestinal tract. How’s that for a visual?
4. It can help you lose weight
Many people often mistake thirst for hunger. Next time you think you’re feeling peckish, drink a glass of water before reaching for that snack.
3. It makes your skin look more youthful
Your skin cells, like any other cell in your body, are made up of water. If you are dehydrated then you can bet your skin cells are too. This lack of hydration becomes evident through dry, tight, flaky and, eventually, wrinkly skin.
2. It helps with headaches
Next time you feel a headache coming on, think about how much water you had to drink that day. Not much? The headache could be due to dehydration.
1. It might help prevent some types of cancer
Some research has found that the greater the water intake, the lower the incidence of bladder cancer. Staying hydrated may also lower your risk for colon cancer.
How Much You Should Drink
How much fluid you need every day depends on your age, sex and activity level.
To keep your body hydrated, aim for a fluid intake of about:
- 3 L (12 cups) for men
- 2.2 L (9 cups) for women
During the summer months, you need even more.
If you’re feeling thirsty, you’re already on your way to dehydration-land. Go chug a glass of water NOW!
Find it Hard to Get Those Glasses Down the Hatch?
Water can be pretty boring on its own. If you’re not a huge fan, here are a few things you can add to make it a bit more tasty:
- Lemon or Lime
- Liquid Chlorophyll
If it’s more a matter of forgetting to drink it, I would recommend:
- Buy yourself a good quality glass or aluminum water bottle that you can carry around with you to work, to school, to workouts, wherever!
- If you sit at a desk all day, get a tumbler with a STRAW. You’ll be surprised how much easier it is to sip on water throughout your day
- Using a sharpie, draw lines on a large 1-L bottle, indicating how much you need to drink and by what time. You can also buy these if you’re not quite that crafty. Check out the example –>
- Set a reminder in your phone
- Use an app, such as WaterLogged, to remind you AND to track your intake
- Gamify your water consumption using an app, like Plant Nanny, where your plant grows (or dies…) based on your water intake throughout the day
Now go forth and hydrate!