You have heard this before: You should stay hydrated. You learned this when you were young, but like many Habits of Health, we can convince ourselves that it isn’t that important.
Between coffees and sodas, many people will go most of the day without a glass of water. Though you might not realize it, that lack of water puts your entire body at a disadvantage and will steadily drag you away from your health goals. Once you do start following Habits of Healthy Hydration, you rapidly see just how much water matters.
Water helps remove toxins and other unhealthy substances stored in your fat cells, making it a key player in weight loss. Being well-hydrated helps all your organs and systems function properly. In fact, every function in your body takes place in water. It’s the solvent that moves nutrients, hormones, antibodies, and oxygen through your bloodstream and lymphatic system and removes waste.
And, of course, it’s essential for supporting your kidney’s ability to filter and eliminate metabolic byproducts and toxins. If you don’t drink enough, your body is forced to recycle dirty water, diminishing the efficiency of every metabolic function.
What you may not realize is that we actually lose nearly 12 cups of water every day: two cups through perspiration, six cups through urine, two to four through breathing, and nearly one cup through the soles of our feet. In high altitudes or dry environments (or hot weather), you lose even more, so you can get dehydrated in a hurry.
For all of these reasons, drinking eight (eight-ounce) glasses of water each day is an important Habit of Health, but it is also a powerful tool for weight-loss.
We encourage clients to build Habits of Healthy Hydration from the beginning of their journeys for all of the benefits we just covered, but water also helps to curb your appetite and can positively impact your metabolism and energy levels. In other words, drinking your daily amount of water makes all of your other efforts even more impactful.
Like many Habits of Health, what we’re asking you to do is relatively simple. Drinking a few more glasses of water each day is not incredibly challenging, but the bustle of our modern lives can make us forget. Just as we are prone to working through lunch without realizing we skipped a meal, we can reach the end of our day and realize we spent most of it dehydrated.
Get a big reusable water bottle. Set reminders on your phone. Skip the sugary drinks. There are big wins waiting for you, so let’s build this Habit of Health today.