10 reasons to take a sip of water right now
A lot of people find it difficult to drink enough water throughout their day. We’re all aware of the long-term benefits of drinking plenty of water and it’s one of the things we all we should try our best to do, but many of us just can’t seem to make it part of our daily routine. We either get distracted with work and conversations or we just straight-up forget about it. And we really shouldn’t.
- Around 60% of the human body is made up of water
- Water protects the vital areas of the body
- Water is required in order to process most bodily functions
The takeaway is pretty simple – drink more water! It regulates pretty much everything we do, it’s incredibly cheap and is many times healthier than fizzy soft drinks. Drinking water helps your body replenish fluids lost through perspiration, urination and other processes.
It also makes you feel better and more energetic – there’s an abundance of studies linking mental and physical fatigue to dehydration.
Finally, if you frequent the gym, drinking enough water is essential to get the most out of your workout because it allows you to absorb nutrients better and makes it easier to transport them through the body.
The recommended daily intake of water varies from person to person (If you’ve heard anything about 8 glasses a day, it’s bunk), but there’s little to no danger in drinking more.
10 more reasons to drink more water
If all that hasn’t already convinced you to drink more water, here are ten more reasons to up your intake:
1. Water lubricates the joints
Cartilage, located in the joints and disks of your spine, contains about 80% water. Long periods of dehydration are almost guaranteed to reduce the shock-absorption capabilities of these joints, leading to pain and increasing the risks of injury.
2. Water forms saliva and mucus
Saliva contributes significantly to the health of the entire digestive system. It prevents friction and reduces the chance of damage. Furthermore, drinking water often helps to keep the insides of the mouth clean. And there’s a dental benefit as well, since drinking water rather than soda and other sweet drinks helps you avoid tooth decay.
3. Water helps oxygen move around the body
Blood, which carries oxygen around the body, is mostly made of water. A lack of water can cause blood to become thicker, increasing blood pressure and the risk of health problems.
4. Hydration helps with skin regeneration
When dehydrated, the skin becomes more vulnerable to problems, disorders and premature wrinkles.
5. Water protects the sensitive tissues
Cushioning the brain, spinal cord and other sensitive parts of the anatomy, water is largely responsible for helping to preserve the structural integrity of your body. It’s also intimately involved in the production and distribution of hormones, which in turn regulate the majority of bodily functions. Dehydration can negatively affect brain function, leading to problems with memory, thinking and reasoning.
6. Water helps with temperature regulation
Water stored in the middle skin layers serves as an inbuilt cooling mechanism. When we heat up, water is pushed to the upper layers and evaporates, cooling us down. Some scientists suggest that when there is too little water in the body, heat storage increases and our strain tolerance goes down, although the evidence on this subject is as yet inconclusive.
7. Water helps with digestion
The digestive system and bowel need water to work properly and water is needed to dissolve and regulate many of the minerals and nutrients our body needs. When dehydrated, you’re likely to experience digestive problems, constipation and an overly acidic stomach. This in turn results in an increased risk of heartburn (reflux) and stomach ulcers.
8. Lack of water can lead to respiratory problems
Water is deeply involved in the maintenance of the respiratory system – our nasal passages, bronchial tubes and lungs need to be kept moist. The body will always aim to preserve resources when dehydrated causing the airways to become restricted so as to minimise water loss. This can be especially dangerous to people suffering from allergies or asthma.
9. Your kidneys on water
Drinking enough water helps your body get rid of waste through sweat and urination. This can indirectly lower the risk of kidney stones formation and other kidney problems, since water dilutes impurities in the urine.
10. Water eliminates headaches
While not always the case, headaches that are not linked to a pre-existing medical condition can often be attributed to a lack of water – and that’s certainly the case with a hangover as alcohol plays a big part in dehydration! The best way to avoid a hangover is to alternate alcoholic beverages with plenty of water. If that doesn’t work, then staying hydrated throughout the following day is vital.
How to ensure that you’re getting enough water
In short, staying adequately hydrated is crucial for your long-term wellbeing and so it’s always a good idea to drink enough water.
- Drink water around mealtimes – a quick and easy way to guarantee an increase in water intake is to drink it instead of beverages that you’d otherwise have with your meal.
- Eat food with high water content – fruits and veggies are here to save the day once more. Not only are they rich in essential vitamins, but their high water content will help you combat the possibility of dehydration. Soups are another great way of getting water into your system.
- Always carry water with you – keeping a (preferably eco-friendly stainless steel) bottle close at hand will ensure that water doesn’t get forgotten throughout your long day at work.
How much water you should drink
The amount of water you should drink really depends on your lifestyle and general health. Whilst two litres can sound like a reasonable rule of thumb for the average adult, factors such as medical conditions, diet and exercise (or lack of it) can drastically change your needs.
Even drinking too much water can be a risk, especially for people with certain medical conditions. If you’re being treated for any illness, you should consult with your doctor before making big changes to your diet and water intake!
Water Distillers and why you should use them
We’ve already established that water is crucial for your health. Drinking tap water, however, is a big no-no. Sadly, municipal water supplies will often contain traces of impurities – fluoride, volatile organic compounds and over 75 000 (!) other chemicals and even though it is deemed safe for consumption, it will do you much more harm than good. If you want to avoid having to drink these toxins, you have two choices – you can either buy already bottled water from your local store or look into water distillation.
Being a firm believer in a greener future, I’ve opted to stay away from bottled water as it tends to come in plastic packaging, which is very dangerous to the environment. Just for reference, your average plastic bottle can take about 450 years to decompose. If you’d like to read more on the subject, I’ve posted an article about it here.
Being one of the oldest ways of water filtration known to man, distillation is a method of purification through heat. The water distiller heats up to the boiling point, turning the water into vapour and, after running it through a filter, eliminating the presence of dangerous chemicals and other impurities.
While the process can take up a bit of time (my distiller takes about 4 hours to make 4 litres of safe water), it is very much worth the wait! With it, I can drink as much chemical-free water as I want, without having to worry about adding to the plastic pollution problem. On top of that, it also ends up being much cheaper than buying packaged water in bulk! I’ve also outfitted my office with a couple of distillers so that my employees can get enough safe water throughout the day without having to rely on store-bought plastics.