Hey, YOU! Yes, you! That’s right… Put down the Pinot 🍷(just for a sec). Put down the soda🥤, the sugary drinks … please.
Now … Chug. Some. Water. Actually, lots of it. If you are like me (and frankly, most of the people I know), drinking water isn’t exactly a delight. You find it hard to drink enough water and it’s usually not what you think of first when you are thirsty or want something nice to drink. We all know that dehydration is bad but do you really know why HYDRATION is GOOD?
Importance & Benefits of Hydration 🚰🚰🚰
We all know that we need to drink water, but do we truly understand why? For starters, did you know that our bodies are made up of approximately 60% water? According to University Health News Daily, water not only helps in all vital functions of the body, it also transports nutrients and waste, maintains blood volume, assists with circulation, and regulates our body temperature. WebMD lists 6 reasons to drink water:
- Drinking water helps maintain the balance of body fluids
- Water can help control calorie intake
- Water helps energize muscles
- Water helps keep skin looking good
- Water helps your kidneys
- Water helps maintain normal bowel function
Women’s Health Magazine goes as far as to say, “Water may very well be the most underrated nutrient—especially when it comes to weight loss.” The same article, in referencing a study, also says, “drinking about 16 ounces of water temporarily spiked participants’ metabolic rate by 30 percent. The researchers concluded that increasing water intake by 1.5 liters (about six eight-ounce glasses) per day would increase daily caloric burn by about 200 calories” (Women’s Health Magazine). How crazy is that?! Just by upping your water intake, you can boost your metabolism resulting in more calories burned! Are you chugging yet?
On a personal note, drinking enough water is often the buffer between making a healthy food choice and making a poor food choice. Every time I have an unhealthy craving or want to snack on something that isn’t that great for me, if I can commit to drinking 8-10oz before reaching for that snack, it not only helps me feel full but it also gives me a minute or two to reconsider my decisions. Oftentimes I’ll choose not to go for the unhealthy snack after chugging a bit of H2O.
How Much Water Should You Be Drinking?
If you Google this, you may get all sorts of answers! But I have found that the most common advice is to drink half of your body weight in ounces. For example, if you weigh 200lbs, you should aim to drink 100oz of water every day (weight divided by 2). If you weigh 180lbs, you should aim to drink 90oz of water every day. If you calculate your ounces and you’re a little blown away, take that as a sign that you need to drink more! But don’t become overwhelmed at your water intake goal. Let’s break that down. Think about your daily schedule and see if you can come up with some time chunks to help break up your water goal. If you need to aim for 100oz of water a day, try to break your goal down into 20oz increments and set time limits for each mini goal.
Natural Ways to Flavor Your Water
Maybe drinking 100oz or more of plain water sounds super boring and ultra difficult. I hear you! It can be hard especially if you aren’t used to drinking that much. There are so many great ideas out there on how to naturally flavor your water. Key word being naturally! It’s important to meet your water goal by drinking water, not drinks made with water that also have tons of sugar and artificial flavors. The most popular way of doing this is to infuse your water with fruit and various herbs.
My favorite easy way to flavor water is tossing a big slice or wedge of lemon into my water bottle. One lemon usually lasts me all week. You can even pre-slice your lemon and toss it in the freezer. Then each morning, grab a slice, pop it in the bottle, add some ice and water, and you’re good to go! Did you know that lemon water can also aide in weight loss? BONUS!