How to maintain a healthy hydration level gives reasons why healthy hydration is important to your health, and why water is the best and healthiest hydration source. Finally, you’re shown eight ways on how to maintain a healthy hydration level.
Why Is Healthy Hydration Important?
Your body depends on water to survive. Every cell, tissue, and organ in your body needs water to work properly. Water is needed for overall good health. Unfortunately in a fast-paced world where there is no breathing space to take that needed water refreshment. Two things can happen: heart health risk and dehydration risk.
Heart health risk
Hydration is critical for your heart health. By keeping the body hydrated, the heart is able to pump blood more easily through the blood vessels to the muscles. And, it helps the muscles work efficiently. The benefit of hydration is that your heart doesn’t have to work as hard.
Simply put, dehydration occurs when you’re not hydrated. But, thirst isn’t the best indicator that you need to drink. Since, when you get thirsty, you’re already dehydrated. In other words, dehydration occurs when your body doesn’t get an adequate amount of water it needs. And without enough water, your body can’t function properly.
Water Is Best And Healthiest Hydration Source
Water is the best way to hydrate your body. But not just any water! It makes a difference if you choose water that is beneficial to your health. After all, you will be drinking water every day.
Why is water the best choice to hydrate your body? First, you don’t have to worry about calories with water. Second, water plumps your skin and hydrates your muscles. Third, water supports life functions. Fourth, water is available and convenient. Fifth, water is socially acceptable, meaning you can drink from your water bottle anywhere.
On the other hand, hydration alternatives like sodas, iced tea, or coffee should be your second best to water when trying to stay hydrated. And as for other sources of hydration, many fruits, and other foods also contain water. These other sources include grapefruit, grapes, watermelon, tomatoes, lettuce, milk, fruit or vegetable juices, soup, stew, broth, and smoothies.
8 Ways On How To Maintain A Healthy Hydration Level
The 8 ounces of water, eight times a day should be sufficient for most healthy persons who don’t live in a hot, humid environment. Nevertheless, if you are sweating from physical work or exercise, you should drink more water, more often.
Furthermore, a person who perspires heavily will need to drink more than someone who doesn’t. While certain medical conditions, such as diabetes or heart disease, may also mean you need to drink more water. Another example concerns people with cystic fibrosis with high concentrations of sodium in their sweat. Therefore, they also need to be careful about getting dehydrated. Lastly, some medications can act as diuretics, causing the body to lose more fluid.
If you experience one or more of these conditions, the following tips will help you stay hydrated and healthy.
Set a goal for how much water you will drink per day
The recommended amount of 8 glasses per day should be the goal, even if you are not thirsty. It is very easy to lose track of how many glasses of water you drink per day. So, how do you track the 8 glasses? Buy 4 bottles (60cl) of water in the store. When you have finished drinking the 4 bottles, you know you have reached your daily goal.
Don’t count on fruit juice as part of your daily water intake
Fruit juices are high in natural sugars and can cause dehydration just like sweetened sodas. This doesn’t mean you can’t drink fruit juices. It means you can’t count it as part of your daily water intake.
When you’re feeling hungry, drink water
While, hunger may not be satisfied by drinking water, nonetheless, drinking water can help you feel full. And water may contribute to a healthy weight-loss plan.
Drink water when you go to a restaurant
Water is the best choice when you go to a restaurant. It will keep you hydrated.
Drink water on a schedule
If you have trouble remembering to drink water, drink on a schedule. For example, drink water when you wake up, at breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and when you go to bed. Or drink a small glass of water at the beginning of each hour.
Weigh yourself before and after exercise
Weigh yourself before and after exercise to see how much you’ve lost through perspiration. And drink a pint of water to replenish every pound of sweat lost.
Avoid sugary, or electrolyte, drinks during exercise
It’s healthier to drink water while you’re exercising. At the end of the exercise eat a healthy snack like orange slices, bananas, or a small handful of unsalted nuts.
Drink water before you exercise
Drinking some water before you exercise, or going out into the sun, is important. Otherwise, you’re playing catch up and straining your heart.
Drinking water is a great way to satisfy your thirst and hydrate. Moreso that water is calorie-free, which makes it a great choice for weight control. But if you prefer 100% fruit juice, low-fat milk, coffee, or other flavoured beverages, they too can keep you well hydrated. However, they won’t count as part of your daily water intake.
In the end, the goal is to make your beverage choices work to satisfy your nutritional needs, fluid preferences, and hydration needs.
Photo Credit: Creative Commons & NPL