Are you drinking enough water? We all know that water is essential to life – we couldn’t live very long without it. But do we really appreciate how it helps us stay healthy and beautiful? Water is involved in so many processes and functions of the body, that it makes sense to pay attention to how much we should drink.
The Amazing Functions of Water
Water acts as a solvent – it dissolves substances (or forms solutions), and because of this, it regulates all of our body functions. This includes the actions of all the substances/solids it dissolves and circulates. So, water is involved in all these vital functions:
· The movement of blood and lymph fluid
· The transport of nutrients into cells
· The transport of wastes and toxins out of cells
· The movement of nerve impulses through the nerves
· The transport of hormones throughout the body
· The function of the brain
· The regulation of body temperature
Water helps with digestion, cleansing and detoxing all our organs. If we don’t drink enough water, we can become chronically dehydrated and harm our health. Some effects of chronic dehydration are constipation, dry skin, asthma and allergies, various body pains including headaches, general tiredness and a sick feeling, low energy and foggy brain.
Water’s Benefits for the Skin
Water is important to maintain skin moisture and suppleness and to flush out impurities that could lead to skin problems such as acne. In August 2006, the journal Skin Research and Technology reported in a study that drinking more water, especially mineral water, can increase moisture in the surface layer of the skin. Improvements in smoothness and softness were also shown.
How Much Water to Drink Daily
Relying on thirst to determine how much water to drink doesn’t always work, especially as people age, the thirst sensation tends to decrease. And sometimes we mistake thirst for hunger and grab a snack, when we should be drinking water. The same thing goes if we’re tired or can’t concentrate. These can be caused by dehydration, but we may eat instead of drinking a glass of water.
Recommendations for how much water to drink vary — typically it’s 8 – 12 glasses per day. Other sources say to drink half your weight in ounces. So, for example, if you weigh 140 lbs., drink approximately 70 ounces of water per day. You should adjust this amount depending on your activity level, the temperature, or if you’re drinking fluids that are a diuretic like coffee and tea (drink more water).
Fresh fruit and vegetable juices can replace some of your daily water requirements, but there is no substitute for pure, fresh water to nourish every cell of your body.