The Unexpected Secrets to Getting Enough Water

Human kidney cross-section on scientific background. 3d illustration. Shutterstock.

9. Hydration for optimal kidney function

Drinking enough water each day is an important part of your health. After all, about 60-70% of your body weight is made up of water, and every part of your body needs it to function properly. Water is also very important for good kidney health. Water is a healthier choice for your kidney health than high-calorie sugary drinks. The risk of kidney stones and urinary tract infections is significantly reduced through hydration. Water helps the kidneys to remove waste from your blood in the form of urine.

Water also helps keep your blood vessels open so that blood can travel freely to your kidneys, and deliver essential nutrients to them. Dehydration can have a harsh effect on your kidneys. If you become dehydrated, then it is more difficult for this delivery system to work. Severe dehydration can lead to kidney damage, so it is important to drink enough when you work or exercise very hard – especially in warm and humid weather. It is suggested that hydrogen-rich water is useful not only for kidney injury but also for diseases of various organs. Hydrogen-rich water can be produced with relatively little effort. It is believed to be useful and is worth investigating further.

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10.  Water intake is important for a healthy heart

Water makes up about 60 percent of your body weight. Every cell, tissue, and organ in your body needs water to work properly. Water gets rid of waste through urination, perspiration and bowel movements. Water keeps your temperature normal and lubricates and cushions your joints. Water is also critical for your heart health. Your heart is constantly working; pumping about 2,000 gallons of blood a day.

By staying hydrated – by drinking more water than you are losing, you are helping your heart do its job. Dehydration can have a negative effect on your organs and bodily functions. This includes your heart and cardio system. When you are dehydrated, your blood volume (or the amount of blood circulating through your body) decreases. To compensate, your heart beats faster, increasing your heart rate and your blood pressure.

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11. How much water do you need for your workout?

Whether you’re a power walker, a casual gym-goer or a marathoner, engaging in exercise means hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. Anyone who engages in 20 minutes of vigorous exercise on a weekly basis, needs more than just the basic amount of 8 cups per day since we sweat when we exercise. That means that we lose 15% of our hydration with each workout to make up for the loss.

We need to drink water for every pound that we weigh. This also means more water before, during, and after exercise. The general guidelines are to drink 17 to 20 ounces of water two to three hours before exercising. Another eight ounces during your warm-up or 20 to 30 minutes before exercising. 7 to 10 ounces every 10 to 20 minutes during exercise, and eight ounces of water within 30 minutes after exercising.

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12. Hydration for running

Replacing fluid after a run is just as important as any other form of exercise – maybe more so! For every kilogram of bodyweight you lose, you need to drink one-and-a-half liters of fluid. Try to drink around 500ml in the first 30 minutes after your run and keep gulping every 5 to 10 minutes until you have reached your target. Don’t over-drink! Avoiding dehydration is key when running but it’s also important to avoid drinking too much.

“The reason why athletes drink too much is almost certainly due to hysteria attached to the supposed dangers that dehydration poses to athletes and to the belief that fatigue is caused by dehydration so that replacing more fluid than is lost will ensure optimum performance. I find no scientific support for either belief.” Says Professor Tim Noakes of the University of Cape Town, who is worried that runners are following out of date hydration plans. Runners who are running faster than 8-minute miles should drink 6 to 8 ounces every 20 minutes.

The concept of thirst, dehydration, and lack of water. A cup of water on cracked dry ground. Shutterstock.

13. What does dehydration look like? 

Dehydration occurs when you use or lose more fluid than you take in, and your body doesn’t have enough water and other fluids to carry out its normal functions. If you don’t replace lost fluids, you will get dehydrated. Staying hydrated is crucial for maintaining body temperature. Your body loses water through sweat during physical activity and in hot environments. Your sweat keeps your body cool, but your body temperature will rise if you don’t replenish the water you lose.

If you’re sweating more than usual, make sure you drink plenty of water to avoid getting dehydrated. Dehydration is graded by degree according to signs and symptoms that reflect the amount of fluid loss. In the very early stages of dehydration, there are no signs or symptoms. Early features are difficult to detect but include dryness of mouth and thirst. As dehydration increases, the signs and symptoms include restless or irritable behavior, decreased skin turgor, dry mucous membranes, sunken eyes. Followed by extreme thirst, less frequent urination, dark-colored urine, fatigue, dizziness, confusion.

a female hand of an elderly woman with loose tissue, dehydrated skin. Shutterstock.

14. Dehydrations is a major cause of premature aging

When dehydrated, your skin loses its ability to hold onto moisture and bounce back, causing it to look sallow, dull and old. This can happen due to alcohol intake, dry weather conditions, smoking, and sun damage, amongst other factors. A few solutions could be: turn down the temperature in your home or while showering. Showering in hot water may be incredibly soothing at the end of a long day, but remember that high temperatures will only dehydrate your skin. Invest in a humidifier, which would add moisture back into the air and protect your skin from drying out. Also try to limit your salt intake. Foods that are high in sodium will naturally end up drawing water from your body, which will lead to dehydration.

Eat foods that naturally have a lot of water in them. These include fresh fruits and vegetables, such as berries, tomatoes, cucumbers, and lettuce. Hydrating face masks contain high levels of active ingredients and remain on the skin for quite a while – which keeps any moisture locked in, preventing it from evaporating. Omega-3 fatty acids are vital to your body for producing your skin’s natural oils, as well as regulating this production. These oils help to keep your skin hydrated, so try to increase your intake of omega-3 fatty acids by eating foods such as oily fish and walnuts. Don’t forget to cleanse and exfoliate with gentle non-abrasive products.

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15. Amazing skin benefits

Your skin is thirsty so ditch the coca-cola and coffee and give your skin what it wants: water! Having well-hydrated skin will prevent acne, wrinkles, skin allergies… the list goes on and on. The best way to rid your self of blackheads is through hydration. A big benefit of drinking water is its ability to flush your system of toxins. This cleanse keeps your skin clean, pushing out bacteria and reducing the risk of acne and other skin problems. If your skin is oily, then your pores will clog up, eventually leading to acne breakouts.

Drinking enough water can help you combat a variety of skin issues including psoriasis and eczema. It does this by helping your digestive system flush out toxins from the body. This, in turn, will improve your complexion for healthy and glowing skin. Believe it or not, drinking plenty of water is great for your skin. Water is considered as the wonder moisturizer which also reduces the appearances of fine lines on the skin, and in addition, helps one to look younger and slimmer too. Not drinking enough pure water makes your skin puffy and can even lead to bloating.

Remedy for hair growth. a bald man poured from a watering can. Pop art retro vector illustration. Shutterstock.

16. Drinking water improves your hair

Want beautiful, soft, luxurious hair? Water might be the answer. Not only is washing your hair in quality water important, but drinking enough can play a major role in your body’s ability to grow and rebuild hair follicles. Signs of dehydration can be seen in your hair. If you notice your scalp is dry, your hair is brittle, or very oily it might be an indication that you need more water. It is well known that a natural buildup of hydrogen oxide in our hair follicles causes hair to grey. This buildup can potentially be delayed by constantly being flushed out of the system through proper hydration.

It is important to drink enough water to feed vital organs as well as other parts of the body such as hair follicles. Roots soak up water from the body to hydrate hair, which then boosts growth. If the body doesn’t have enough water to reach the scalp, your hair can become dry, brittle, and potentially stop growing. To help solve dry scalp flaking, you need to make sure you’re drinking enough water. Eight glasses a day is the recommended amount – once you’ve hit your goal for long enough, you may find that your scalp will recover, helping your hair to become healthier. Just remember to compensate for any exercise you’re getting.

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17.  Eye health and water pollution

Common eye problem caused by dehydration is eye strain. Our eyes are surrounded by fluid, which protects them by washing away debris and dust every time you blink. Staying well-hydrated is very important to maintain a healthy balance of fluid in the eye. Dry eye occurs when there are insufficient tears to nourish the eye, and tears are necessary for providing clear vision. Tears wash away foreign matter in the eye and help reduce the risk of eye infections. Symptoms of dry eyes include irritation, excess watering, blurred vision and feeling foreign matter in the eye. As a symptom of dehydration, the best treatment for dry eye is rehydrating by drinking plenty of water. Eye drops are only a blanket solution unless otherwise prescribed.

If caused by dehydration, drinking plenty of water will help flush out salt in the body and properly hydrate your eyes to help reduce eye strain. Resting the eye by blinking or shutting the eye will also help alleviate eye strain. You can prevent dehydration by drinking plenty of water throughout the day. Doctors sometimes recommend nutritional supplements as part of a holistic dry eye treatment plan.  Also, simply drinking more water might help relieve dry eye symptoms. Mild dehydration often makes dry eye problems worse.

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18. Depression, anxiety, and mood

Recent studies have shown that proper hydration affects your mood and overall mental health. Researchers have found a link between depression, anxiety, and mood to dehydration because 85% of brain tissue is water. Dehydration causes energy generation in the brain to decrease. So, lack of water can be the culprit in any of these disorders really. However, as in many other medical areas, contaminated water can also cause health problems.

It is known that lead in water can cause damage to nervous systems, with depression being one of the most common results of lead-filled water. A reverse osmosis filter is one of the best ways to ensure that you are drinking safe water. Dehydration is known to contribute to stress. Fatigue, anger, negative mood, and cognitive problems all increase when you’re dehydrated. Stay ahead of stress and sip water throughout the day. Keep a bottle of water with you at all times and drink some every half hour or hour during the day.

Kitchen preparation scene containing ingredients for a honey, lemon and ginger drink – a herbal home remedy for colds. Shutterstock.

19. Drinking enough for colds and flu

When you are feeling under the weather, make sure you stay hydrated. Cold and flu symptoms like runny noses and sweating which often accompanies fever, increase the amount of water your body loses. For more on this topic visit Tips for Staying Safe and Healthy in the Cold Winter Months. Water is the best fluid to drink when you have a cold or flu as it helps lubricate the mucous membranes of the throat. Hot drinks are also a good choice as the hot steam they produce can relieve congestion.

Fluid loss is caused by different symptoms of the common cold and flu. If you are running a fever at all, that can draw water and electrolytes out of your body as sweat. Also, you may be breathing faster, which leads to more moisture release. Drinking cold water lowers the body temperature and takes a fever down. Staying hydrated at any time is important, but when the body is in distress, using the cold water helps tremendously. Adding a squeeze of lemon and a little bit of sea salt during a fever can replace electrolytes that may have been lost.

Aquarium corals reef. Shutterstock.

20. How an aquarium can benefit your home

Have you ever noticed a calm or relaxed feeling when you’re around an aquarium? Having water in your house, in a visible location can be calming. Water features and aquariums reduces stress, as you watch fish make their slow and rapid movements in the water, you immediately experience a relaxing effect, which helps to soothe the mind. Some studies also show it reduces pain. Many people have reported a relief in pain after looking at the aquarium just for a few minutes.

Aquariums provide more restful sleep. A fish tank can induce a relaxing effect on the entire body. It may even reduce high blood pressure. According to studies from the University of Exeter’s European Centre for Environment and Human Health indicate that the presence of a fish tank in the house can minimize blood pressure. More benefits would be Increases your productivity. People in offices with aquariums have increased productivity compared to those that don’t. And lastly, it helps Alzheimer’s patients. Studies indicate that people suffering from Alzheimer’s will eat more and require fewer supplements if they spend a considerable amount around an aquarium.

Swimming bottle of water in the water on sky background. Shutterstock.

21. Do you need to drink when you swim?

Yes of course!  While swimming, you should drink an additional 16 ounces of fluids two hours before a swim so you go into the pool well hydrated. Because, while you’re in the water, usually you do not notice that you’re sweating. As your body sweats when you swim, you need to replace that water. One of the most commonly asked questions is ‘do you sweat when you are swimming?’ The quick answer is yes, but that’s not quite all there is to it. Because you are in the water your body is cooled more rapidly so you probably aren’t aware that you are sweating most of the time.

To rehydrate properly afterward you should drink about 8 ounces every 20 minutes unless you’re in the pool for less than half an hour. Maybe you would think that by putting water on your skin you would improve moisture, however topical hydration is not as helpful as you would assume. Water that comes into contact with the skin quickly evaporates and takes away many of the skin’s natural oils.

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22. Practical advice

To prevent dehydration and to make sure your body has the fluids that it needs, get in the habit of drinking a glass of water first thing in the morning. A glass of water with each meal and a few more glasses of water throughout the day are really key to establishing this healthy habit. However, If you have digestive issues, make sure to drink before you eat and not during meals because water dilutes your digestive enzymes. Drink proactively, especially before, during and after exercise, on long airplane flights and in hot weather.

Did you know: Caffeinated beverages and sugary sodas are dehydrating? Caffeine will stimulate your kidneys to excrete water, and sugary soda will pull water from your surrounding tissue to dilute the concentrated sugar in soda, thereby reducing your hydration. Instead of reaching for that cup of coffee or glass of juice as soon as you wake up in the morning, quench your thirst with a glass of water instead.

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23. The foundation of health and wellbeing

You can’t survive more than a few days without water. When we don’t drink enough it affects our entire system and causes fatigue and disease. Pure water has no sugar, fat, cholesterol or calories, and if it’s good water, it has nothing else bad, unhealthy, or fattening. Water delivers nutrients to cells, while it also helps the body eliminate waste products from the cells.  Water moistens joints and acts as shock absorbers inside the eyes and spinal cord.

Drinking water and remaining hydrated helps the body maintain a constant temperature by acting as a thermostat. When a person is too hot, whether from being in a hot environment or from intense physical activity, the body sweats. When sweat evaporates, it lowers the body temperature and restores balance. For weight loss, consider drinking water when you are hungry. This reduces appetite, which is why almost every diet book recommends it. Most importantly, drinking enough promotes good health.

Attabad lake. Shutterstock.

24. There you have it. 

Drinking water helps maintain the balance of body fluids. Your body is composed of about 60% water. The functions of these bodily fluids include digestion, absorption, circulation, creation of saliva, transportation of nutrients, and maintenance of body temperature. Drinking water benefits digestion, metabolism, toxin elimination, and other functions. Water also promotes weight loss.

If you don’t live right outside of a glacier… and you are looking for the best drinking water, then look for filtered water with a hydrogen-producing stick that keeps the water alkaline and antioxidant in nature. It has similar effects to fresh glacier water. This will give you lasting vitality, keeping you young and healthy for years to come.

 

Where did we find this stuff? Here are our sources:

Benefits of alkaline ionized water by Dr. Hayashi

Brosura Hunza research 

NCBI Articles, water research

Researchgate – Hydrogen-rich water for improvements of mood anxiety and autonomic nerve function in daily life

Hydration for health

Effects of hydrogen-rich water in of polycystic kidney disease

 

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