Don't Wait. Hydrate!
It’s common knowledge that the human body is predominantly made of water. In fact, it is believed that the average male body is between 60-65% water, from our blood, to our brain, to our bones.
When so much of us is made of H2O, it’s understandable why we need to drink so much water to keep going. However, a lot of of us still don't drink enough water on a daily basis, which can affect out health in the long run! In this article, we answer all of the common water-based questions, so you'll understand the importance of water, tips on how to remember to drink more, and the risks of not drinking enough.
Why do I need to drink water?
Mature adults lose approximately 2.5 to 3 liters of water a day, with one of those liters being lost during the night! So we need to drink water throughout the day to keep our bodies functioning the way they should. Benefits to drinking enough water includes:
- Keeping your body temperature regulated
- Maintain a healthy digestive system
- Carrying oxygen and nutrients through your blood
- Prevents overuse of your kidneys and liver by flushing out waste easily.
How much water should I drink a day?
The amount of water you should consume in a day depends on your lifestyle and diet. For the average adult, drinking 6 to 8 glasses of fluid is recommended to ensure a healthier diet. However some, such as those who are more active, will need to drink more water as more fluid is being released through breathing and sweating.
Consuming excess salt also affects your hydration as salt interferes with the body’s fluid balance. If you find that you’re often thirsty or urinating frequently, it is a good idea to cut back on salt.
Another source of dehydration is alcohol. Have you ever found yourself gasping for water after a night out? That’s because alcohol causes your body to remove fluid through your renal system at a quicker rate than normal. So it’s important to occasionally drink water with alcohol to avoid feeling thirsty afterwards.
What happens if you don’t drink enough water?
With your kidneys’ job being to clean the body of toxins and turn waste products into urine, they need plenty of fluid to function properly, otherwise there won’t be enough fluid for them to flush out toxins. A lack of water can cause kidney stones to form, this could causes mild to more extreme discomfort and nausea, depending on the size of the stone.
Drinking water is vital for your digestive system, so not drinking enough fluid will causes there to be problems when it comes to passing waste. This is because the large intestine soaks up water from your food waste, leading to constipation.
An obvious side effect of a lack of water is dehydration. You may feel like you have no energy, lightheaded, irritable, and of course, feel thirsty. Everyone gets dehydrated every once in a while, especially during the summer – however extreme dehydration can be very dangerous and have life threatening repercussions.
If you’re drinking less fluids than your body is releasing, you’re body won’t be flushing out as much waste as easily, leading to high concentrated urine dwelling in the bladder which can be damaging to your body, causing urinary tract infections.
Headaches and migraines
According to the Journal of Biological Chemistry 158, the brain is made up of approximately 73% water. So it stands to reason that it needs water to keep working! Dehydrations causes your brain tissues to shrink - like how a raisin is a dehydrated grape. This causes the tissue to pull away from the skull which can cause mild to more severe pain, such as migraines.
If your body is craving something, it’ll tell you to go get it, and the same goes for water. If you’re trying to get to rest but can’t seem to shut off, it could be because your body is telling to go get a drink of water. You lose a lot of water at night time, so make sure that your body is well stocked up on water before you go to bed! If you’re chronically dehydrated, it could lead to insomnia .
How long can you go without water?
A common question we’ve all asked is how long can a human survive without drinking water. Although it may vary from person to person, it is generally believed that a person can go about 3 days without water. Extreme dehydration can lead to many dangers and complications such as seizures, kidney failure, swelling of the brain, coma, and eventually death.
Tips to drink more water
Always have water with you
No matter where you are or what you’re doing, whether it be chilling at home in front of the TV, or going for a walk or a drive, it’s a good idea to always have easy access to water, take a water bottle with you in the car, or when you go to bed. Just having water there will make you drink it more, and it will eventually become a good habit to have!
Use a water app or set yourself reminders
With a busy life, it’s easy to forget the little things like drinking water. It’s little, but essential. Luckily, most of us nowadays have something in our pocket which often has a better memory than us! Set a reminder on your phone to get a glass of water every few hours, or with your meals. There are even apps specially designed to make sure you are kept hydrated throughout the day!
Add flavour to your water
Water is good for you, but let’s be honest, it’s boring. Luckily, water is customisable! Adding flavours, or buying flavoured water, is an effective way to make drinking water more enjoyable, some flavourings can be high in sugar however, so make sure you check the labels before buying.
Drink sparkling water
Need something more than flovour to make drinking water a more enjoyable experience? Sparkling water is the perfect way to add a bit of fizz, literally, to your drinks. Plus it’s a much healthier option than fizzy drinks, which are often full of sugar, and even the sugar free options have an increased risk of diabetes. It is also believed that sparkling water can fill you up more, so if you’re always feeling peckish, sparkling water may help with that!
Alternatively, use our very own water tracker to keep track of how much fluid you drink a day! Simply download using the link below, print it out, and cross off or colour in the glasses every time you have a drink!
Water makes the world go round, everything and everyone needs it. It’s amazing how much good comes from having a glass of the clear liquid. Make sure you don’t wait, and stay hydrated at all times, the benefits are substantial!