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Importance of Staying Hydrated


Importance of Staying Hydrated

Our bodies comprise 60% water, hence the reason why you should stay hydrated 24/7. It’s recommended that you drink 8 glasses of water every day. Though there’s not enough science behind why you should take not less than 8 glasses of water daily, your body needs to stay hydrated to get enough energy and stay active. 

Why You Should Stay Hydrated

Here are key reasons why you should stay hydrated:

Maximizes Physical Performance

Dehydration can have negative effects on your physical performance. You should stay hydrated, especially during high heat or extreme exercise. Dehydration can be noticed even if you lose as little as 2% of your body’s water content.

But this is common for athletes who can lose up to 10% of the water through sweat. This can cause fatigue, low levels of motivation, and a lack of ability in controlling the body’s temperature. It can interfere with your ability to exercise both mentally and physically. Luckily, hydration can prevent this from happening and can also minimize oxidative stress caused by intensity exercise.

Staying Hydrated Prevents and Treats Headache

Dehydration can cause headaches and migraines in some people. According to research, headache is among the most common symptoms of dehydration. Most dehydrated individuals experience frequent headaches. But regular intake of water can relieve headaches. For example, a study on 102 men found that consuming an additional 1.5 liters of water per day experienced improvement on the Migraine-Specific Quality of Life scale. Forty-seven percent of them reported headache improvement, while 25% of men who consumed the recommended amount reported the same effect.

Acts as Lubricant

Regular intake of water means it provides better lubrication for your joints and spinal cord. Cartilage – a shock absorber contains 80% of water, which means that you should stay hydrated to avoid joint pain caused by lubrication.

Forms Saliva and Mucus

Saliva aids in digestion and keeps the mouth, nose, and eyes moist hence preventing damage due to friction. Staying hydrated also enhances a clean mouth. Instead of sweetened drinks, opt for fresh water to prevent tooth decay.

Enhances Energy and Brain Function

Your hydration status directly affects how your brain works. According to some studies, even a loss of less than 3% of the water in your body can affect your brain’s performance. The case is true for sportsmen who lose lots of body water due to exercise – they are bound to have low concentration if they do not drink water regularly. They also can experience frequent headaches. If you want to be more energetic and increase brain function, ensure to stay hydrated.

Staying Hydrated Helps with Constipation

Constipation is when it’s difficult to pass stool. Doctors recommend fluid intake as a remedy for this health problem. Constipation is mostly caused by a low intake of water in young and older people. In this case, mineral water is the best remedy instead of sweetened beverages. However, most fluids can help with constipation.

Helps with Weight Loss

Did you know that drinking lots of water can help you lose weight? Regular water intake can aid in weight loss by increasing your metabolism, which may increase the number of calories you burn in a day. According to a 2013 study in 50 overweight women, an excess of 500ml water thrice a day before meals for about 8 weeks led to weight loss. Remember that time is also important. Drinking water half an hour before meals will bear more results. It makes you feel full hence eating a small amount of food.

Staying Hydrated Helps Prevent Hangovers

A hangover is when you feel foggy after indulging in alcohol. Alcohol causes you to lose more water than you take since it’s a diuretic. If you lose more water than you take, it can lead to dehydration. Though dehydration is not the sore cause of hangovers, it can cause headaches, migraines, dry mouth, and thirst. To avoid hangovers, ensure that you drink water in between the drinks and a big glass before going to bed.

Remember that hangovers can be partly caused by dehydration, and drinking lots of water between the drinks can reduce some symptoms.

Promotes Soft and Healthy Skin

Everyone wants to have soft, beautiful, and healthy skin. With enough water in your body, you are guaranteed these features. Most people try beauty products for their skin which might not have positive effects.

Alongside your daily routine to ensure that you stay beautiful, incorporate some water and see the difference. Perhaps you don’t need to spend lots of money purchasing beauty products since your body has the ability to make your skin glow. All you need might be a little bit of some extra water.

Staying Hydrated Helps Maintain Blood Pressure

Blood contains about 90% water. Enough water in the body prevents your blood from becoming thicker, hence preventing blood pressure. Lack of enough water in your body may cause your blood to be thicker, increasing your chances of developing blood pressure.

Prevents Kidney Disease

Dehydration can lead to kidney disease such as kidney stones. However, there is not enough evidence to prove whether regular intake can prevent the recurrence of this disease to people who have had it. Regular fluid intake increases the amount of urine passing through the kidneys, diluting the concentration of minerals preventing them from forming crystals. To keep kidney stones at bay, ensure you are hydrated all the time.

Staying Hydrated Enhances Exercise Performance

It is believed that regular intake of water may enhance your performance during exercise. Though there is a need to back this claim, dehydration affects your performance during exercise that lasts longer than 30 minutes.

Dehydration affects your physical and mental health. Even mild dehydration can have significant effects on your general health. Ensure that you stay hydrated to prevent any health issues that may arise due to the lack of enough water in your body. If you find it difficult to drink spring water, add lime or lemon. Remember, any fluid you take counts in the required fluid intake. But we emphasize taking water instead of fluids with added sugar and color.

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Kaitlen Knowles, Clinical Social Work/Therapist, LCSW (she, her), Rochester, NY
Pagano Wellness Clinic – Individual, Couple, and Family Therapy in Richmond Virginia

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