The week of May 3-9, 2010 marks National Drinking Water week to raise awareness about the vital role water plays in our lives.
In terms of health, proper hydration is essential to keep our bodies in working order. The human body is roughly 55-75% water and experts agree that we to drink at least 2 liters of it a day to stay healthy. Water helps deliver nutrients to our cells, eliminates bodily wastes, lubricates joints, protects our organs, helps metabolism, and acts as a thermostat, using sweat to cool when we get overheated.
Some symptoms of dehydration include dark yellow and strong smelling urine, dry skin, headache, fatigue, hunger, and thirst. Once the symptom of thirst is experienced, the body is already dehydrated.
Here are some ways to make sure you and your family are getting enough hydration.
- Aim to drink at least 6-8 glasses of water per day (and more if you are exercising regularly)
- Carry water with you and drink regularly throughout the day. Do not wait until you feel thirsty to drink
- Avoid excessive caffeinated beverages as they actually pull hydration away from the body, making you more dehydrated
- If you have trouble drinking water, try adding a slice of lemon, orange, lime or cucumber to your bottle to give it a little flavor and make it more palatable
- If you are exercising outside, make sure you consume 10 ounces of water per 15 minutes of physical activity
- Encourage children to drink water rather than just milk or juice
Remember that water is essential for our bodies to work properly so drink up!