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Can I Get You a Drink...of Water?

Water makes up 60-75% of our body and not getting enough affects nearly every part of us!

Daily adequate hydration is critical if we want to feel our best. It plays a key role in regulating body temperature, maintaining energy levels, delivering nutrients and oxygen to our cells, lubricating our joints, protecting our organs and tissues, flushing bacteria from our bladder, and improving our sleep, mood and ability to think clearly. If all of these benefits were found in a pill, it would be considered magic! However, with a few tweaks to our daily habits, we can easily create an ease and awareness that will help our body find its perfect balance.

What does dehydration look like?

  • Feeling unusually tired, rundown or sluggish even after plenty of sleep

  • Brain Fog (a dehydrated brain actually shrinks inhibiting your ability to think clearly!)

  • Irritability

  • Dry, brittle fingernails & chapped lips

  • Dry, bloodshot eyes

  • Headaches (blood pressure is compromised)

  • Increased constipation & concentrated yellow appearance of urine

  • Sluggish metabolism, bloated

  • You feel hungry, even after you have eaten

  • You get sick often (hydration has a huge impact on the immune system)

Sometimes it can be tricky to pinpoint as these symptoms can mimic other causes but experimenting with upping your water intake is a good place to start if you notice any of these consistently.

Now let's talk about the best ways to keep your cells full of those amazing H2O molecules! The key is to strategically hydrate throughout the day so your body has a steady stream of hydration and nutrients to keep it energized and working optimally.

Rise and Shine

Our body does quite a bit of work while we are sleeping and it's common to wake up dehydrated. Drinking a 16 oz glass of pure water first thing in the morning (before your coffee) is the ideal way to start your day. It helps to flush your body of waste, wakes up your digestive system and cleanses your organs. This one simple habit really sets your body up for success as the day goes on.

Eat your Water

You can hydrate with food! In fact, if you eat a variety of fresh fruit and veggies everyday you will find that you are instantly more hydrated. The water content in certain fruits and veggies is considered "structured water". Fiber, vitamins and minerals are held together and delivered to your body, feeding and hydrating your cells!

Some of the most hydrating food sources include cucumbers, melons, pomegranate, strawberries, spinach, lettuce, celery, tomatoes, avocado and broccoli (above 80% water!) Consider having a variety of these on hand that you can grab when you need a snack.

Hydration Hacks

Electrolyte packets: There are so many fun options now for adding electrolytes to your water. We are currently loving the Cure Hydration brand. No sugar in these and they come in a variety of fun flavors.

Chia seeds: Chia is an unassuming powerhouse full of fiber, antioxidants and omega 3 fatty acids. You can do a lot with chia, but consider adding 1-2 TB to your water bottle. The seeds will swell and a gel will form around each one. As you consume, not only will they allow your cells to absorb and hold onto more water, but the fiber will assist the bowels in removing toxins from the body and increase the population of good gut bacteria, improving metabolic health and helping with digestion.

Lemon Juice ice cubes: This is a fun and simple way to make your water feel extra special. Fill an ice cube tray with freshly squeezed lemon juice and freeze. When you fill your water bottle, add a few lemon cubes and you have a natural electrolyte water enhancer!

Touch of sea salt: Sea salt is full of essential minerals and electrolytes. Adding a pinch to your water is an easy way to make your water more hydrating.

Sparkling water in pretty glass: Instead of relaxing with a glass of wine after work, try a flavored sparkling water and add to a fancy glass to elevate the hydration experience. This is a great way to create a healthy ritual to your routine!

Tea Time

Creating a nighttime ritual of having a mug of hot herbal tea is the perfect way to wind down with the added benefit of hydrating. Make sure you choose herbal and non-caffeinated for the evening. Dedicate a shelf in your kitchen for your teas and you can choose based on your mood. Chamomile lavender to support sleep...Elderberry and lemon balm for immunity...Ginger for digestion...Dandelion for detox...Rose Hibiscus for glowing skin...Kava for stress relief...well, you get the idea! Add a spoonful of honey and you have a very nourishing elixir.

What's the ideal amount?

Too much of anything can be well, too much. Chugging large amounts of H2O could actually deplete your electrolyte reserves along with essential vitamins and minerals, causing a weak light headed feeling. There are a variety of factors that effect how much water each individual needs such as where you live, your diet, your hormones, the season, your health, whether you're pregnant or breastfeeding. Some experts say the ideal ratio is half of your body weight in oz. Others say 8 eight oz glasses a day (however, there is no actual science behind this one). Using your urine color as a guide can be helpful, aiming for a pale, clear appearance. Being mindful to increase intake if you are working out and sweating excessively. Also, if you are pregnant and breastfeeding your intake needs go up. And of course, when you are thirsty, drink!

Final Tip

Find a favorite water bottle that you truly enjoy for its function and appearance. Carry it everywhere, take sips throughout the day, and you will be creating a positive hydration habit!

Don't wait...come see us at Therapy Plus! Our experts can help you feel more balanced, radiant and achieve your health goals. Give us a call at 229.233.6677 for scheduling or questions.

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