Monday, August 15, 2011

Drink Up - Give Your Body What It Needs

What should I drink?  How much should I drink? What frequency do I need to drink?  When is a drink needed?  It would seem that something as simple as water may be very complicated.  But it doesn’t have to be that way.  Many of us don't get enough water for whatever reason or excuses we can come up with to rationalize why we don’t or won’t. Life is busy, we substitute, we’re forgetful, too many bathroom breaks and sometimes we just don't care. Survival without food is possible for several weeks, but try to go without water for more than a week and expect to perish.  Even going without proper hydration for several hours takes its toll on your health. 

Your total adult body weight consists of between 60 to 70 percent water.  The human body needs all that water for so many different functions, such as elimination of waste and toxins, regulating body temperature, producing digestive enzymes, distributing minerals, vitamins, amino acids, glucose, and many other nutrients to your cells and many other important roles in your health.  Life, as we know it, cannot exist without this one simple ingredient, purified water.  

Dehydration occurs with as little as a 1% loss of total body weight as a result of fluid loss.  If you fail to replenish daily water losses over time or lose a lot of body water in a very short period of time, you will notice signs of thirst.  Fatigue, loss of appetite, dark urine, poor concentration, clumsiness, dizziness or light headedness and cramping in limbs, stomach or back, to name just a few.  By the time you feel these signs of thirst, it’s already too late! 

There’s no hard and fast rule to how much water a person needs daily.  If you’re active, you’ll consume more.  If you live in a hot climate, you’ll consume more.  Listen to your body.  But as a general rule of thumb, most in the debate agree that eight 8-ounce cups of water throughout the day is about what’s needed for an adult to replace what’s lost.   Drinking purified water, or eating water rich foods regularly throughout the day every couple of hours will maintain what your body needs. 

It is especially important to stay hydrated during intense or strenuous exercise, and especially during the warmer times of year by consuming enough fluid to replace that lost to sweating. If you become mildly dehydrated, drink water slowly one sip at a time to replace lost fluids.  Besides purified water, I have found from my own experience that recovery drinks after a workout are extremely effective at replenishing the body with the essential nutrients lost during vigorous exercise and rehydrate the body with lost fluids. 

Drinking a sufficient amount of clean water is one of the smartest things you can do for yourself and will help your body to prevent short changing itself.  So the next time you reach for a coffee loaded with syrups, sugars and whipped cream, before you indulge in sodas, carbonated beverages and sugar loaded juices, reach instead for the one drink that truly satisfies thirst and improves your health, water!

It's never too late to start changing bad habits, habits that can shave years off your life and impact the quality of your life. So, if you want the straight dope on fueling your body with nutritious food and what to avoid, I'm here to help and it won't cost you a penny for the free advice based on my own experience and what has worked for me. I hope you'll follow my blog and provide me with some feedback on my posts. I'll be catering good choices that include both dietary and lifestyle changes. So if you could use a boost to your engine, buckle up for the ride of your life and let's get started!

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