Sometimes I find it so hard to drink enough water each day. Usually all I want to drink is a cup of tea! Unfortunately, tea is actually a diuretic which means that it increases water losses from the body. It contains Caffeine which is a stimulant and the tannins in tea can reduce the body’s ability to absorb iron from food.
Water is an essential nutrient that helps the body to function properly. Water is important in aiding digestion, it helps carry all the other nutrients in the blood, assists the kidneys in functioning correctly and helps to remove waste products from the body. It helps to lubricate the joints & organs of the body and it assists in regulating body temperature. I know that I often feel so sluggish and tired when I haven’t kept myself sufficiently hydrated.
In order to stay healthy we need to consume lots of water in addition to the food we eat. All non-alcoholic drinks will help towards your daily fluid intake but we should remember that some drinks are better for us than others and plain water is the best!
We all know it is ideal to avoid drinks that are high in sugar. Alternatively, adding fresh fruit like a squeeze of lemon, can make your glass of water much tastier. Lemon also has the added benefits of containing lots of vitamin C, helping to maintain your immune system, aiding digestion & flushing out toxins to name just a few.
Water requirements do actually vary from person to person and depend on age, weight and activity level. However, as a guide around 1.5 – 2 litres a day is a good place to start! If you are someone who currently doesn’t consume much water at all, I would advise that you build up your water intake over a couple of weeks. If you are not used to drinking much water, it could be hard work to suddenly start drinking 2 litres a day straight away! I would suggest starting with 2 glasses of water a day for, say, 3 days and then add another glass and so on. Your body will thank you for it!
I have a great water bottle from www.hydratem8.co.uk (pictured above) which is sectioned off with times of the day to have drunk your water by. It is very motivating and makes it a lot easier to drink often throughout the day! I sit with it right in front of me at my desk at work so that I have no excuse and I am tempted to keep taking a sip! You could easily make marks on a water bottle of your own in the same way!
Remember exercise increases your need for water to replace the fluid you have lost in sweat! So ensure that you continue to drink up before, during and after your exercise session (obviously little sips at a time so as not to make yourself feel sick!).
So now it’s time to make a conscious effort! Add that yummy fruit for flavour, grab your bottle & keep supping!