My cup runneth over

pexels-photo-176649.jpegDid you know 60% of your body is made of water?

Not only do you need to eat right, but, you have to drink plenty of fluids to refresh yourself every day.  The old saying of drinking 8, 8 ounce servings of water was the norm, but, according to Clemson State University, you need to drink 1 quart (4, 8 ounce cups) of water for every 50 pounds of body weight.  A 200 pound man would need to drink 16 cups of water a day!!

Why on earth do we need that much water?  Water brings nutrients to our cells and also removes waste from our cells.  Every part of our body needs water to function!

If we don’t get enough water, our bodies will show symptoms such as, bad breath, dry mouth, dry eyes, fatigue, an increase in heart rate, decrease in blood pressure, constipation, decreased urine output, muscle cramps, and loss of skin elasticity.  Severe dehydration can cause death.

When exercising, it’s a good idea to drink, 2 or 3 cups of water 2 hours before your workout.  While exercising, try to drink up to a cup of water every 15 minutes.  If your workout is strenuous and lasts over an hour, you might want to drink a sports drink for the added electrolytes and salt to regulate your body.

If you are exercising in extreme heat, make sure to drink more water.  By the time you actually feel thirsty, you are already starting to get dehydrated.  Increase your intake by 2 or 3 cups.  Even though water can help with regulating body temperature, it will not help prevent heat stroke.  Make sure you can exercise in some shade.

If you are on a diet, drinking water can also help you to lose weight.  Sometimes our bodies don’t recognize that we are thirsty, but, give the feeling of hunger.  Try to drink a glass of water before meals.  Also, instead of high sugar drinks, try drinking water with your meals.  If you don’t like the plain taste of water, add some fresh lemon, lime or drink carbonated water.

Just a fun fact, when you are on a diet, you can eat vegetables such as cucumbers, lettuce, zucchini, radishes, celery, tomatoes, cabbage, cauliflower, eggplant, peppers, spinach, broccoli, carrots, peas and white potatoes or fruit like, watermelon, strawberries, grapefruit, cantaloupe, peaches, pineapple, cranberries, oranges, raspberries, apricots, blueberries, plums, cherries, grapes and bananas without gaining weight, why?  Because they are mostly water!

Make sure to check on the children and elderly!  These categories of people can’t feel the need for water as much as the rest of the population.  Dehydration can happen fast if children and elderly are vomiting or have diarrhea.  Hospitalization could be necessary.

Also, if you want to avoid a hangover after a night of partying, try to drink some water in between alcoholic beverages.  The headache from drinking is your body’s way of telling you, it’s thirsty!!!