The other day, I was caught running from one place to another—meetings, to training clients, to my own workout, and realized…I was thirsty.
I hadn’t really drunk much water that day, and unfortunately, I didn’t have a water bottle on me. For a good probably 2-3 hours, I felt like I was in a dry desert.
All I could think about was water—it never sounded so good.
Have you ever experienced thirst you were unable to quench in the moment?
It’s uncomfortable—and a reminder that in order to thrive, we need some high quality H20.
Not only does water quench your thirst, but if you want the secret to great skin, boundless energy, recovery from tough workouts or poor sleep, improved memory, hormone balance, good digestion, and a revving metabolism—look no further than water.
Lately, I’ve been talking about water more than ever with various people and clients who have consulted with me about ways to enhance their diet and/or lifestyle.
Often times, when we first meet, I inquire about their water intake.
And, more often than not, it is low.
Quite frankly, most people do not drink enough water, nor do they realize the tremendous impact that lack of water can have on their health.
Recently, a client showed me her food log, consisting of a cup of coffee in the morning, a can of Diet soda in the afternoon, and no other liquids in the evening.
No intake of actual water whatsoever, and about 20 ounces of fluids all together.
No wonder she had been experiencing headaches and sugar cravings in the afternoons, lacking an appetite, and feeling sluggish all around.
As simple as it may sound, water is often times one of the essential ingredients I talk to them about in the ‘recipe’ for optimal health and well-being.
The adult body is at least 60% water. Water is the primary component of all bodily fluids—blood, lymph, digestive juices, urine, sweat and tears. In addition, water is part of nearly every bodily function: circulation, digestion, absorption and elimination of waste.
Therefore, in order to function at your peak, it’s no wonder that drinking water can help enhance all these processes.
In layman’s terms: Water does a body good.
It can be tough to consume all the water you need in a day without a conscious effort.
After all, thirst we often experience in our mouths is not the initial sign to consume H20. In fact, if we wait to sip some water until we are thirsty, we are actually several steps behind the hydration our bodies need. A dry mouth is one of the last signs of dehydratio.
So exactly how much water do we need?
Google “daily water intake” and you will get a slew of differing answers and opinions.
You’ve probably heard is 8-cups per day (or 64 oz.). I would argue that is the bare minimum you need. On average, we actually need about 12 cups per day, or nearly 100 ounces.
As a general rule of thumb, if you are being mindful of your water intake, the first step would be to consume at least half your body weight in ounces if you are not active, and, if you are active, then consume 75% to 100% your actual body weight in ounces. The majority of this water should be consumed 15-30 minutes before meals or two hours after, as not to interfere with your digestion.
This intake can also come from some of the foods we eat (think fresh fruits and vegetables=some water content), but the majority of it should come from good ol’ fashioned high-quality H20. In addition, coffee and soda pop do not count as ‘water’ for the day. Coffee is actually a diuretic that may cause the body to excrete more water than it contains. Soda and fruit juice drinks, as well, with their abundance of concentrated sugar (or fake sugar) may also upset our water balance—stealing water from our body when it enters our digestive system.
Without enough water, we basically dry ourselves out (ie. dehydration), which in turn, is linked to not only thirst, but an extensive list of health conditions, including diabetes, poor metabolic function, arthritis, asthma, back pain, fatigue, cataracts, high cholesterol, depression, heartburn, high blood pressure, kidney stones, migraines, headaches, multiple sclerosis, to name a few.
I won’t bore you with the extremely nerdy facts I have all about water—all I know is that you just gotta try it for yourself to experience the difference.
Prior to realizing I needed to consume at least 100 ounces each day, I was taking in maybe 48-64 ounces—about 3-4 full 16 ounce bottles of water each day, and just feeling sluggish. Sluggish a few hours upon waking, sluggish during my workouts, sluggish during my work. As I began to make a concerted effort to up the ante on my water intake, I was amazed at the energy I had; 100 ounces of water later and I felt like a new person. Not only energy either. The color in my skin livened, my digestion improved, my appetite was regular, my concentration was better, my workouts were stronger-win, win, win, win, win!
Water, does a body good.
How much water have you had today?