One of my number one tips in supporting a healthy diet and lifestyle? Drink more water.
This is something everyone can incorporate, benefit from, costs nothing, and will make a huge difference in so many areas of you health.
In fact water is involved in almost every bodily function!
From the minute I wake up, I can’t get my hands on a huge glass of room temperature water fast enough. It just feels great and wakes me both mentally and physically. I also squeeze an organic lemon into my first glass of water for the day for a quick boost of Vitamin C and digestive support. Lemon water jumpstarts our digestive juices, facilitating the movement of waste out of our systems after all the hard work our bodies do on digestion and gut repair while we sleep.
Much of the time, people aren’t drinking enough water. I have a friend whose mom only drinks soda, and considers that enough water. What!? Everyone needs to be drinking lots of water, actual 100% H2O, throughout their day to prevent inadequate intake or dehydration.
Did you know dehydration puts you at risk for arthritis, asthma, type II diabetes, back pain, depression, heartburn, migraines, MS, lupus, and more? Water supports your immunity as well, keeping you from getting sick often and ultimately systemic inflammation that leads to many of the conditions I mentioned above.
Injured? Drinking lots of water is one of the best things you can do for recovery, one of the many reasons I drink a ton of water (I have a back injury as many of you many know.)
Our bloodstream, made of 85% water, is responsible for carrying repair substances to the injury site. Isn't that awesome! Water is also essential for our skin, accelerating the repairing of wounds and skin lesions.
Some of the other amazing benefits of drinking enough water is that it regulates our body temperature, protects our organs and tissue, lubricates joints, and carries nutrients and oxygen to our cells- one of the many reasons water is so complimentary to a nutrient-dense diet and proof that if you’re not drinking enough, you may not be reaping the benefits of your food as much as you may think.
One of my favorite things about being properly hydrated is how much better my digestion operates.
If you aren’t drinking enough water, you probably aren’t having good bowel movements.
Water is the primary component of all bodily fluids including our lymph system-which is responsible for helping us move waste from our bodies.
If you are constipated, I can bet that upping your water intake will alleviate that discomfort in most individuals. When many people make the shift to eating healthier, going from the Standard American Diet of processed foods and refined carbs and sugar, to eating tons of fruits and vegetables, they can experience changes in their digestion. This is because although going from a low-fiber diet to a higher fiber diet- is excellent, it can be a shock to your system.
It’s absolutely crucial to drink lots water in your transition to eating more fiber and whole foods! This will help regulate your digestion and promote healthy bowel movements in no time.
So, how much water should you drink? The general guideline is to divide your body weight in half and drink that amount in ounces daily. For example if you weigh 150 pounds, you would drink 75 ounces of water each day. However, I think we all have different needs and it's important to listen to your body.
Also if you live a fairly sedentary lifestyle, and eats lots of fresh fruits and veggies containing water themselves, you aren’t going to need as much water as someone for example who is super active and eats mostly protein and healthy fats. I think everyone can benefit from a big glass of water each morning, and at night, and a few other nicely sized glasses throughout the day, in between meals.
I’m sure you’ve heard when you’re hungry, or having cravings, sometimes you just need to drink more water and that you're dehydrated. There is definitely truth to this.
When you’re making the switch to a healthier lifestyle, you might have cravings and it can take some time to adjust to new foods and a new way of eating. Keep water around at all times and use it as your best tool in combating through this transition.
And remember if you’re drinking coffee and tea, they’re actually diuretics and shouldn’t take the place of your water consumption. In fact, I actually recommend drinking more water, the more coffee and tea you consume.