The human body is made up of about 60% water. Water is a life-giving source for humans, animals, and plants. In fact, without water, life on our planet wouldn’t survive. So, for something so crucial to our survival, you would think that it would be better respected. That everyone would revere water and drink it all the time. But in fact, it is not. For some people, it is the last thing they think about and the one liquid that they hardly ever drink. This is a grave mistake and one that will cost these people their health and quite possibly their lives.
Despite the fact we have been told for decades that we should be drinking eight glasses of water per day, most people don’t drink anywhere near that amount. If you had to poll the five people that you are closest to, you might find that the average adult is drinking anywhere from one to three glasses of water a day. Maybe a bit more if you know someone who plays a sport.
Too many of us are walking around in a dehydrated state. This is obvious from the number of people who suffer from dry, sallow skin, acne, bad breath, acute headaches, and many other physical symptoms. In fact, at some point, we have all felt the effects of dehydration. It could be minimal now and again, or it could be daily, or perhaps, you’ve had a brush for more severe dehydration. Either way, it is obvious that when you do rehydrate, everything begins to work again as it should. The power of water is awe-inspiring.
What Happens When You Drink a Glass of Water
Before we see exactly what happens when you do drink enough water, let’s be clear about what happens when you don’t. When you don’t drink enough water, your body will sweat away all its fluid, and you will be left thirsty, have dry mouth, and less inclination to urinate. As well, you will be losing the sodium and potassium that your body needs. This happens most often in the heat. However, it can happen anywhere, no matter what the temperature.
Dehydration starts to happen when the body loses more water than it is taking in. It will happen faster in hot weather, but anyone anywhere can become dehydrated if they are not careful. In the beginning, the symptoms are mild and can include the thirst and dry mouth that we mentioned before, as well as an overall sense of fatigue, headaches, and a general decrease in moods.
At some point, you will realize that you need to drink water and when you do…everything changes! That first sip is sometimes so addictive that you’ll find yourself downing an entire glass in seconds. It’s cool, refreshing feeling automatically wakes you up and energizes your whole body. If you had a dehydration headache, it wouldn’t go away upon the first sip. Still, if you drink two or three glasses, then you will feel a noticeable difference without having to take any headache medication.
Is All Water Equal?
Yes, and that’s one of the best things about it! There’s so much variety! The possibilities are actually endless. You can add fruit to infuse your water and give it some natural flavor. You can boil it and have a tisane. You could even make your own ice popsicles on a hot summer day. When it comes down to it, it doesn’t matter which type of water you choose or how you choose to consume it. The simple act of getting into your body is what will reap all the health benefits.
This is the most simple and straightforward type of water. It comes directly from the faucet in your house and for the most part, can be used for drinking. There are areas of the world where this is not the case. And even where it is considered safe to drink, there are times when contamination happens. However, for the most part, it is an easy and free way to have a glass of water.
Mineral water is exactly what it sounds like; it contains minerals. It is sourced underground and is full of minerals such as calcium and magnesium. It is not treated in any way as treatment would damage and remove those essential minerals. It is because of these minerals that this type of water can sometimes have a salty taste.
Think fresh, direct from the stream or waterfall, spring water. This is rainwater that has accumulated underground and has made its way to the surface via a natural spring. This is the water that we most often find in bottled water.
This is a type of water that has been purified in a water treatment plant. All of the bacteria have been removed with the goal of making it potable once again.
Sparkling is an excellent choice for people who find it challenging to drink water during the day. And for anyone who is trying to cut down on sodas, this is a great alternative. Sparkling water is water that has been through the carbonation process. This makes regular flatwater have the fizz and bubbles just like soft drinks do. It’s the simple process of adding carbon dioxide to the water that makes it have that bubbly consistency. So, if you’re trying to cut down on soda due to the high sugar content but still love that bubbly fizz, then sparkling water is for you.
How to Maintain a Good Balance Throughout the Day
So, here’s the thing. If you only have a glass or two of water at the beginning of the day, you won’t be able to maintain your hydration all day long. It is important to hydrate regularly for the body not to have too much all at once. Because when that happens, it ends just being a diuretic, and you’ll find yourself in the washroom, peeing it all out. You’ll want to consume approximately 64 ounces per day to feel all the benefits. However, these 64 ounces will need to be spread out during a solid twelve to sixteen-hour period.
Some great ways to spread it out are as follows:
- Have a glass by your bedside table and drink it first thing upon waking.
- Put a glass in each room of your house so that you drink, no matter where you are.
- Carry a water bottle every time you go out and make a goal to finish it and refill it while you are out.
- Buy a fun water bottle that encourages you as you go. There are many fun quotes and inspirational statements.
- Encourage your friends and family to do the same. Start a challenge group either in person at your workplace or online.
The Many Health Benefits of Drinking Water
- Drinking water makes you feel refreshed immediately
There is an immediate feeling of relief when you are thirsty, and you begin drinking a glass of water. That feeling is a real thing, and it’s called the anticipatory reflex. Although it will take some time for the water to travel through the body and reach all your cells, there is a fun little trick at play. Your taste buds tell your brain that water is coming even before it gets there. You will continue to drink, but that feeling of relief that happens right away is one that lets you know how badly you were dehydrated and that you must keep drinking.
- You’ll have a boost of energy in the beginning and higher energy throughout the day
From the very first sip that wakes you up and gets you going in the morning to a remedy for the typical afternoon. Water is your go-to. Not coffee. Coffee, just like green tea, can dehydrate the body. It doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t drink it because there are many benefits to caffeinated drinks. However, you must balance it with water.
- Increase satiety when you drink water
The next time that you feel hungry try having a glass of water before you reach for something to eat. A lot of times, we are dehydrated, but it is masked as hunger in the body. The brain gets confused when it is lacking water and can give off the wrong signals.
- Weight loss due to increased satiety
Drinking water regularly is a great way to curb your appetite. A glass before each meal will increase satiety by filling your belly.
- A boost to the metabolism will also help with weight loss
If you want to boost your metabolism to help you lose weight, then drink more water! It is a known fact that drinking water is one of the best ways to boost your metabolism. Your body digests food better and faster because it is working at optimal levels and is never lagging due to dehydration.
- Sports performance increases
Water can help you train longer, harder, and better. Not just chugging it as you go, but also drinking it all day long even when you are not working out. Keeping the body hydrated adequately in downtime makes it easier for the body to work at a higher level during a workout.
- Have brighter and clearer skin
If your body is dehydrated, then the signs of aging become more apparent. Your skin will be dry; you will see deeper and increased amounts of wrinkles and age spots. Your entire complexion will begin to appear to be dull and lifeless. This works the same for acne. Water helps to clear blemished skin and keep it clearer long term.
- Your stomach will be less bloated
It may seem like drinking water will fill your belly and make you bloated, but the reverse is the truth. The body does the opposite. When it is dehydrated, it will retain whatever water it has because it sees the situation as a terrible experience. This causes bloating, puffiness and overall dis-ease in the body. Start drinking water more regularly, and you will that your puffy areas will begin to slim down.
- The brain becomes more focused with water
When you start to feel like you are lagging at the office or are falling asleep on the couch at the end of the day, you may be feeling that way because you are dehydrated. Dehydration can impair cognitive thinking, so it’s only reasonable that to be able to give your best work performance, you must drink water. Your memory and creativity, as well as your boss, will thank you!
- Water flushes out toxins
As you drink, the water flushes everything through you. The more you drink, the easier a time the kidneys have to flush and filter your blood. When the kidneys are acting more efficiently, more toxins are eliminated. This means avoiding things like kidney stones down the line.
- Stop pain in its tracks
Relieve pain from headaches and migraines with water. The same goes for muscle cramps and nerve pain. Water can help the body relax these areas and relieve the pain traditional associated with them.
- You find that you will become more regular
The colon needs water to function correctly. Everything must continue to move through the body, and waste must be eliminated daily. When it is not, constipation and all the issues associated with that will begin. So, if you want to be and stay regular, water is the most effective way to do so.
- Your mood will improve
Dehydration can make you crabby and upset. You may find that you have a short temper or that a lack of water aggravates it. So, whether it is you or your office neighbor. Crankiness is easily solved with a tall, fresh, glass of water.
When it comes down to it, drinking water is a necessary part of life. It’s not just for that one hour at the gym, nor is it for a sip or two at dinner. Water is an essential part of life, and to be healthy and happy for the long term, this is why it is crucial to begin integrating drinking water regularly.