Though nearly two-thirds of an adult’s body weight is water, when summer turns up the heat, it can be hard to keep enough of it moving through your system. Too many of us reach for a soda or an iced tea during the peak of the season when we really should reach for more water. Why? It’s been determined that the brain and the heart are three-fourths water, while the skin is nearly 64 percent and your muscles are nearly 80 percent! It should be no surprise that your body needs a lot of water every day just to keep going.
Water does more than just quench our thirst on a sunny day. Here are a few reasons why water is so important to your health:
• Delivers much-needed oxygen throughout the body
• Flushes out waste (primarily through urination)
• Helps metabolism by carrying nutrients throughout the body
• Assists with basic cellular functioning and helps maintain muscle development
• Regulates your body temperature
• Acts as a kind of shock absorber for your nervous system and helps lubricate the joints.
Moreover, water may help keep your weight in check. A recent study published in Annals of Family Medicine found that drinking enough water may help you lose weight. The study also showed a relationship between dehydration and obesity. Researchers suspect that people who drink water have other healthy habits, and that choosing water over sugary drinks may have a number of benefits.
Here are a few tips to sneak more water into your day. It will likely cause additional trips to the bathroom, but lighter-colored urine is a good sign that your body is getting enough water and staying adequately hydrated.
DRESS IT UP!
If you find water tastes boring, add some lemon wedges or other chopped fruit for some extra flavor. Some folks will even add herbs and flowers to enhance the taste. In addition to warm weather and humidity, exercise, caffeine, and alcohol can also cause you to dehydrate. If a few lemons will get you to intake more water, slice away!
MAKE IT PART OF YOUR DAILY ROUTINE.
Instead of a diet soft drink with your lunch, have a glass of water instead. The human body can process an estimated 15 liters of water every day, but you don’t want to overdo it. Too much can cause a decrease in sodium and potassium in the body, a condition called hyponatremia.
KEEP A WATER BOTTLE AT YOUR DESK, AND TAKE SIPS THROUGHOUT THE DAY.
A water bottle can be a great way to keep track of how much you are drinking since water bottles’ volumes are often indicated on the label (by the ounce or liter), and come in a variety of sizes and styles.
WANT TO KEEP IT CHEAP?
When out at a restaurant, just drink water. Sure, it may not sound as exciting as a piña colada or mojito, but you’ll stay hydrated and will be in a better mood when the check comes.
GETTING MORE WATER DOESN’T ALWAYS HAVE TO INVOLVE A BOTTLE!
Hydrate while getting your nutrients and antioxidants by slicing up some watermelon or munching on some celery for a snack. Watermelon is 92 percent water by weight, and celery has even more—95 percent! Dice up a zucchini; it’s 97 percent water, or peel an orange, which is 87 percent water.