One of the most common health problems that many people suffer from and don’t realize that it can easily be remedied, is dehydration! Over three-fourths of the population are chronic victims because they fail to drink adequate amounts of water for their body’s health needs. Symptoms may come in the form of headaches, dry skin, depression, fatigue, constipation, hunger, stiff joints, loss of sleep, and many other complications. The issue is that most people treat the symptoms with food and medication instead of providing the body with what it needs – “good old-fashioned H2O!” Did you know that our bodies are made up of 65-70 percent water? If we deprive ourselves of this vital life-support system, our bodies will literally start shutting down organ by organ. This can start happening if your body loses as little as 20 percent of its normal water content.
You might think you’re drinking ample amounts of water because of other liquids you consume throughout the day. But, not all liquids hydrate the body. Some liquids, such as coffee, tea or sodas, have caffeine and sugar and are actually dehydrators and deplete your water count. So if you must drink caffeine, consider refueling the body with an extra glass of water for every caffeine-loaded drink that you consume. If you prefer flavored water, you may add a slice of lemon or lime. The sodas should exit your diet immediately as they are more than just a dehydrator, they are full of toxins.
Most people drink more water in the summertime; since that is the season we tend to be most active. During this time, temperatures are elevated and we sweat more frequently. In actuality, it’s just as important to drink ample amounts of water in the winter. Just because it’s not hot out and you’re not working up a sweat doesn’t mean that you don’t need water. One way to help you remember to drink more is to always carry a bottle of water with you in the car, at the office, etc. – make it a habit! You should be drinking at least half your body weight in ounces of water daily. For example, if you weighed 150 pounds, you should drink at least 75 ounces (a little more than a half-gallon) a day.
Ever experienced water retention? It’s not because you drank too much water…it’s just the opposite. Our bodies are designed to have a balanced ratio of salt and water. When this ratio isn’t balanced, our brains instruct the kidneys to increase the salt and water retention and this is how edema (swelling/water retention) occurs. More salt doesn’t mean to increase your table salt intake, it means to incorporate unrefined sea salt into your water on occasion. I use Celtic Sea Salt and it’s great not only for water absorption to the cells, but it aides in digestion and helps to eliminate toxins. So, next time you have a headache or think you’re hungry, ask yourself if you’re thirsty instead. That’s the question your body probably wants answered. Drink a tall glass of water and your body will thank you over and over again as water is the single most critical factor to health and well-being.