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Why you should drink water

When we are thirsty, we automatically reach for a glass of water. And while we know that drinking a certain amount of water every day is essential, most of us tend to drink much less. Yes, I asked at least fifty people who were surprised to realize they didn’t drink the mandatory eight glasses of water every day and that includes me. D’uh! Okay, so the other liquids one consumes, such as coffee, tea, soup, juices, sambar, rasam etc. add up. Still – the point is – one MUST drink sufficient quantities of water on a daily basis.

You already know that water is an essential ingredient required by our body cells. In fact, our body is composed of 60-70 per cent water. Water is the second most important thing we need to survive, the first being –you guessed it – oxygen.

Here is how much weight water carries in our body:

  • Blood is 83% water
  • Muscles are 75% water
  • The brain is 85% water
  • Bone is 22% water

Did you know that we can survive for several weeks without food – but only a few days without water?

So – you need to make sure that those levels are maintained. Let’s look at the most vital reasons for drinking water, first:

Water helps lose weight

Drinking water suppresses the appetite and accelerates our metabolism. When you begin your meal with a glass of water, you end up eating fewer calories.

Water helps your kidneys function better

If you don’t consume enough water, your kidneys suffer. (Ugh – that awful feeling when you want to urinate and can’t – because you didn’t drink enough water!) Fact is, water waters down the body’s salts and minerals, preventing them from forming kidney stones. When you don’t drink sufficient water, you are asking for kidney stones.

Water helps your brain

Considering that the brain is 85 per cent water, you have a solid case for drinking water. To function efficiently, your brain depends on the water circulating through the body. So the next time you feel all muddled, drink a glass of water and clear it up. Have a bottle of water handy to sip from at work.

Water reduces your risk for heart disease

Studies show that drinking four to five extra glasses of water a day reduce the risk of heart disease by 41 per cent in women and by 54 per cent in men.

Water makes your skin glow

Well hydrated skin looks smooth and glowing – and you look younger. Water is the number one moisturizer and makes the skin elastic. It detoxes your skin, cleaning your blood so that you don’t end up developing acne, and other skin problems.  When your skin is deprived of water, well – imagine the rest.

Water helps digestion

We need plenty of fiber and water to aid in digestion. If you drink enough water, the digestive track is happy and lets you have regular and easy bowel movements. When you don’t drink enough water, your system becomes dehydrated, the colon dries, since any water you consume is already absorbed by the rest of the body – and the result? **it does NOT happen. It hurts, resulting in heartburn, gastritis, ulcers….all of which can be avoided by simply drinking enough water.

Water eases muscle cramps

Enough water intake lubricates your muscles and joints. Not drinking enough results in muscle cramps. So if you are an active person drink plenty of water. If you exercise regularly – drink water before and after your workout to avoid muscle cramps.

Water is an energy booster

As the day progresses, we begin to feel fatigued. If we don’t drink enough water, it feels worse. We lose focus, can’t concentrate and develop headaches. When we drink enough water, it helps the blood carry oxygen to all parts of the body efficiently and improves our energy levels. Enough water also means that your heart need not pump harder to circulate the blood to all parts of the body.

Water controls body temperature

Water plays a big role in body temperature control. For instance, when you exercise, your temperature rises and you sweat profusely. The sweat then evaporates and cools you. Water is lost.  When this is excessive, you suffer from heat exhaustion.  If you are well hydrated – this does not happen, allowing you to enjoy the benefits of exercise.

Water is vital for pregnant women

Pregnant women are advised by their doctors to drink sufficient water to facilitate increased blood flow. Even after baby is born, breastfeeding mothers must drink more than the usual amount of water since breastfeeding makes them thirstier. Not drinking enough could result in dehydration.

So – how to get into the habit of drinking water, the wonderful zero calorie drink & natural cleanser?

Action tips:

  • Ideally, drink at least two to three liters of water daily
  • Begin by increasing your intake by one or two glasses daily
  • Start your day with a glass of water. Keen on losing weight? Squeeze a lemon into the water
  • After every meal – drink an extra glass of water
  • If you enjoy your coffee or juices, cut down on one cup and  opt for a glass of water instead
  • Being thirsty means you are already dehydrated – this can be avoided when you drink water frequently
  • Keep a bottle of water handy and sip often.
  • When you feel tired, drink water
  • When you have a headache, drink water
  • When your stomach cramps, drink water

Long term health and fitness means proper hydration and adequate exercise. So stay healthy – start by drinking enough water. As easy as that.

0 02 November, 2010 Health, Lifestyle November 2, 2010

About the author

Vidya's healthy concoctions (read: health posts) makes the perfect cup of GingerChai for body and soul of our readers. Follow @vidyasury You can read her personal concoctions in her personal blog, Going A-Musing

View all articles by Vidya Sury

10 comments

  1. Mohan

    I remember reading such facts elsewhere too a couple of years back. I do drink as much water as possible through out the day whether at work or home.

    Reply
  2. pallavi

    A well written educative article.. However there is a major downside due to drinking too much water… It can lead to a disorder called Hyponterima- a condition due to loss of salts or excessive water or fluid intake that can lead to dilution in blood!

    So yes, water in any form is good for the system but in moderation!

    Reply
    1. Sir Pumpkin Longshanks

      I was just getting to that.

      But obviously we don’t need bucket loads of water to remain healthy; just enough.

      Reply
  3. Pratiksha

    70 and 75 percent of the earth’s surface is covered with water and roughly around 70 percent of adults body is made up of water. Interesting isn’t it?

    Reply

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