As much as 75% of the human body is water. Human beings can’t survive without water. In fact, we can only live for three days without drinking water. When you consider how long we can live without it, water is the most important nutrient in our lives. It’s important to remember that water is not only healthy, it’s necessary for leading a longer, better quality life.
Individual need for water varies greatly with lifestyle, weight, and environment. People who exercise a lot need more water. People who weigh a lot need more water. People in dry climates need more water. Research shows that more than two-thirds of adults don’t drink as much water as they should each day. Drinking enough water replenishes your body and keeps it well-hydrated, allowing it to function as it should.
Water carries oxygen and nutrients throughout our bodies in our blood, and it removes wastes when we sweat or urinate. Water is important for joint health. And though it offers no energy value, water makes it possible for us to digest our food.
Most of us drink water only when we are thirsty. But waiting for thirst is not the best way to judge your body’s needs. In truth, We don’t get thirsty until we’re already dehydrated! Dehydration is a common cause for fatigue. It can also contribute to headaches, dizziness, low blood pressure, and a variety of minor symptoms. At its worst, untreated dehydration can lead to hallucinations, loss of consciousness, or even death.
In general, people need to drink at least 2 liters (or 8 cups) of water every day. People who exercise, carry more weight, or live in dry climates should drink enough water to replace what they lose through sweating. You might think that any beverage containing water would meet your water needs. But that’s not true. Other drinks – sodas, coffee, alcohol – may even deplete your body’s water because they act as diuretics and cause us to urinate more when we drink them. In fact, while you may think you’re getting more water when you drink these types of beverages, you’re really losing it almost as fast as you drink it.
You need more water When you exercise. Working or working out cause you to perspire, increasing the rate at which you lose the water in your system. This is true in cold weather as much as in warm climates. Professionals advise us to drink 1-2 cups of water before we exercise and to continue to drink water as our exercise continues. For every pound you lose by exercising, you should drink at least 16 ounces (two cups) of water.
Your body even loses water while you sleep. Drinking a glass or more of water before you go to sleep will help you wake up refreshed and energetic. Illness is a very important reason to drink more water than usual. Colds and flu dehydrate our bodies quickly and make us feel even more sick. You can help to prevent this by drinking more water during the times you’re sick.
There is public debate about whether bottled water is better than water from the tap. In fact, tap water is highly regulated by the government. Unless your local water system is out of compliance with regulations, your tap water is safe to drink. Bottled water, on the other hand, is not subject to such stringent requirements. Of course, bottled water is much more expensive than water from the tap. But you should investigate this subject on your own to find out what type of water best type of water best meets your needs.
For a long, healthy life, drink a glass or two of water several times each day. Carry water with you whenever you can, and drink throughout the day. It’s also a good idea to develop the practice of drinking water instead of other drinks that don’t replenish your body’s nutrients.
Water is necessary for life and for health. Developing and maintaining healthy habits is one easy way to assure a long, healthy life. Remember, drink at least two liters of water every day. And if you are active, drink more than two liters.