Much has been written about hydration and the importance of water consumption. Actually so much so that it becomes difficult to determine the facts from fiction. One thing that’s commonly agreed upon is that the majority of us are dehydrated most of the time.
Really? It’s hard to believe isn’t it?
A recent study in Australia found that 80% of us suffer from chronic dehydration, meaning that must of us are walking around with sub-optimal water levels in our body’s. It’s not commonly understood that once you feel thirsty you are already dehydrated.
So how much should we drink? When should we drink and why is it so important to our health?
How much water?
Let me start with how much should we drink. The obvious answer is ‘it depends’ of course that’s a bit of a cop out so whilst we do need to take into consideration your climate, gender, age and exercise regime we can put a little science to answer this question. I had the good fortune to spend some time recently In Kangaroo Island SA with the very learned Sue McCarthy. Sue has spent over 30 years teaching health and wellbeing to thousands of people like you and I. She taught me two invaluable lessons related to hydration which I will share with you.
Hydration consumption rule; Drink enough water (bodyweight kg / 8) x 250ml. I often find an example helps so let me give you one; 52kg female, 52kg divide by 8 = 6.5 x 250ml = 1.625ltrs per day. For ease of calculation one could suggest you’d make that 2 litres of water to consume daily. Pretty simple really and once you know that volume you need to drink you can simply modify for hotter weather or if you are undertaking vigorous exercise. It’s the same formula for guys too.
When should we drink?
Want to get your body kicked started and fired up first thing in the morning? Of course you do. Start with getting that first litre of water into you soon after rising. Your circuitry system will thank you for assisting it. Overnight your metabolism has been breaking down and digesting your body’s last meal and that fresh glass of cool water will enable all those free radicals and excess residue from burnt calories to be flushed through your body.
The fluid rule is quite simple - don’t drink with your meal, stop drinking 15 minutes before and wait one hour afterwards. Chug your water, don’t sip. I find that having a one litre metal bottle means I know exactly where I am on my consumption (I drink 4 litres a day) and I’m not contributing to more plastic on the planet that ends up in our ocean. My small contribution to a greener planet.
Why is water important to our health?
Quite simply you need it to survive so becoming more educated on this topic puts you in the driving seat for a longer and healthier lifestyle. There are so many ben
efits to drinking fresh, clean water every day. The following are my top 4, your body uses water in all its cells, organs and tissues to remove toxins, water aids the digestive process, it regulates body temperature and finally assists the transporting of nutrients to the brain.
Drinking the right amount of water per day also increases your metabolism, studies have shown that drinking 500ml of water can increase your metabolism 24-30%. Your body burns fat processing the water through your system. Does that mean you can lose weight drinking water?
The colour of you pee is your body’s way of updating your health status. If your pee is light, you’re getting it right.