It’s summer, and the scorching heat leaves you feeling lethargic and tired. You are encouraged to drink enough water and stay well-hydrated all day long as you lose body fluids through sweat. You long for the monsoon, or the winter when the heat doesn’t bother you much. But, mind you, you also lose body fluids during the winter, through urine! So, keeping the body well hydrated is a necessity not only during the summers, but in every season.
Our body consists of more than 60% water, and to ensure sufficient fluids in our body, we need to drink enough water throughout the day. Experts have always recommended 8 to 10 glasses of water per day. Some health experts suggest starting the day with a litre of water to help flush out all the toxins in the body and replenish the fluid content of the body which hasn’t had its fill of water through the night.
However, the quantity of water required for each individual depends on that individual’s needs. Try as I might, I haven’t been able to start my day with a litre of water. I throw up. I am comfortable with two glasses of lukewarm water. Being indoors most part of the day, my water needs aren’t as much as, say, of a person working outdoors, or one leading a physically active life.
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If you indulge in some heavy duty workout, like jogging, dancing, aerobics, etc, you need to stay well-hydrated. Kids need to be encouraged to keep drinking water, as also pregnant women and lactating mothers. But, the need for water changes in old age.
How does water help the body?
First and foremost, water helps regulate the body temperature by keeping it cool.It plays a very important part in the efficient functioning of our kidneys. The occurrence of kidney stones increases with lower intake of water on an everyday basis. Water also affects the health of our skin. The moisture content of our skin decreases with improper consumption of water and this results in dry skin, chapped lips, and acne.It also affects our digestive system. Low intake of water is naturally going to give us constipation. The food needs water for digestion as well as for elimination.Low intake of water also results in lack of energy, drowsiness, lack of concentration and headache. And, water also helps in weight loss. Drinking a glass of water half an hour before meals ensures lesser consumption of calories through food and a reduction in appetite.
Intake of sufficient water through other fluids:
Apart from water, other fluids like coconut water, fruit juices, milk/coffee/tea/buttermilk supply the water our body requires. Coconut water being the best alternative. Fruit juices do supply enough water, but they also tend to increase the sugar levels, hence it’s best to eat fruits rather than drink fruit juice.
Fruits like watermelon, strawberries, orange, pineapple, peaches have high water content. As do vegetables like cucumber, lettuce, radish, zucchini, cabbage, tomatoes, peppers and spinach. Consuming at least four servings of these fruits and vegetables in a day guarantees sufficient water to the body, apart from the vitamins and minerals they supply.It helps consuming these after an intense workout, as the fruits and vegetables help in replenishing the body with fluids, natural sugars, mineral salts and vitamins that we lose during exercise.
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So, how much water should you drink?
Staying well-hydrated – be it summer, monsoon or winter – is necessary for our body. We often do not feel the thirst when we spend time indoors, in air-conditioned rooms. But, it’s imperative that we keep sipping water even when we are indoors, to replace the fluids we lose through urine. Just like we need to keep sipping water when we are outdoors, or during summer.
There will always be countless studies revolving around this topic. There will also be countless suggestions and recommendations about how much water is enough for your body. However, drinking sufficient amount of water, ultimately, depends on individual requirements.
It’s your thirst that tells you how much water you need to drink. Often, when we experience hunger, we are actually thirsty, and drinking water takes care of the need to put something in our mouth to satiate us at that moment.
All you need to do is just listen to your body, to your brain. It will tell you precisely when you need water and how much of it you ought to consume. Just because others gulp down water by the gallons, does not mean you have to do it, too. Your body composition and water needs are way different from others. Therefore, you are the one to know precisely how much water your body requires.
Disclaimer: This post was written by our guest contributor. The content herein is owned by the blogger. Gympik is not responsible for any kind of infringement caused.