Drinking enough water each and every day is so important to your health, but drinking the right amount can be really, really hard! Lots of my clients struggle with this, but it is definitely something we must learn to get better about. Are you really drinking enough water?
Why Water Is Important
Water is the most important nutrient in the body. You can go eight weeks without food, but only days without water. Fluid balance is a necessity for true health since the adult body is made up of 55% water, and a young child’s body is up to 65% water. It is involved in numerous metabolic functions and without adequate water, many of your body’s processes simply will not work properly. There is no substitute for drinking water.
Just a few of the important roles of water are:
- Transports nutrients
- Removes wastes
- Flushes toxins
- Empowers the body’s natural healing process
Proper hydration directly affects the regulation of blood sugar metabolism. Dehydration can lead to feelings of hunger and therefore to overeating. Also, the body will send out craving signals when nutrients are in short supply. Keeping your body hydrated can help to prevent those cravings and make sure the nutrients reach the cells, keeping the metabolic processes functioning properly.
All healing processes are slowed if hydration is not good. If people are not progressing on a healing program, it can be due to drinking an improper type or not enough water. Water is so important to the kidney’s health and they are very last organ to complain. Too often people don’t have symptoms until they are near pathological problems.
How Much Is Enough?
Some people worry about retaining water if they drink “too much” of it. Believe or not, the way to eliminate fluid retention is to drink more water! When you don’t drink enough water, the body retains it, which adds to your weight.
On a Nutritional Balancing plan, it is recommended that we drink 3 quarts (96 oz) of water per day. Another good formula that I have been taught is drinking half your body weight (lbs) in water (oz). I feel that is a good starting place for some that get a little overwhelmed with the 96oz.
For example, If you weigh 150 lbs, you would take 150/2 = 75 oz per day. So, if you choose to use this formula please keep in mind that this would be 75 oz bare minimum.
There is a little bit of bad news to add to this. If you drink alcohol, coffee or tea – or any diuretic – you should add 8-12 oz more to that daily total of 75 oz, depending on how much of that diuretic you may drink. Which may bring you right back up to the 96 oz.
Signs of Dehydration
Water is the most common nutritional deficiency in the American population. If the body’s water content drops by as little as 2%, it will cause fatigue. A drop of 10% will cause significant health problems (digestive, cardiovascular, immune and musculoskeletal).
|Early Signs||Late Signs|
Plan to succeed
Once you figure out how much water you need per day…..make a plan.
One of the best ways to start your day is with a glass of water. Once you are in the habit, this is easier than it may sound. Drinking water early in the morning is excellent to start your day for other reason, as well. It often will induce a bowel movement, especially if the water is warm or hot.
What I find to be easiest for me is to measure out what I need for the day. I fill up my three quart jars first thing in the morning. Then when I fill up a glass I use the water from those jars. I always feel a sense of achievement as I see the water level in the jars disappearing, and it makes me even happier on the days that I drink them all before dinner. Don’t get me wrong there have been times on busy days that even I struggle with not getting enough water. Let’s just say that those are the nights that I have to get up and go pee in the middle of the night because I had to drink too much after dinner.
Carry water with you all the time. I like drinking water while in the car or waiting in traffic. Have water at your desk and try and remember to take water breaks. Set timers every hour, if needed, or do whatever it takes. Don’t make excuses for not drinking enough water. Water is too important to your health.
It is also really important that we are drinking the healthiest water that we can. Finding the healthiest and most nutrient dense food options is extremely important, but to some degree, finding the best water options can be even more important! Some sources of water can contain hundreds of chemicals, and many of these chemicals can be more easily absorbed from water than from food.
Spring water is always the first recommendation, but short of living near a spring or buying spring water, the next best thing is to filter your water. You may be able to find a spring near you at www.findaspring.com. Most all tap water is full of contaminants, heavy metals, fluoride, chlorine and more. Tap water, if unfiltered, often has too many contaminants to be good for drinking, so it is important to use a filter.
Carbon filters (activated charcoal) or other natural filters are a good place to start. EWG’s Water Filter Buying Guide is very helpful in figuring out more information on why, how, and where to buy a filter. Even starting with a water pitcher filter like Brita is better than not using a filter at all, until you can do some research. Another great place to start is looking up what kinds of contaminants are showing up in your community drinking water. Look up your water system on EWG’s tap water database, or call your local water utility and ask them to send you a copy of their Consumer Confidence Report, which contains information on its testing of your system’s water.
Well water can be fine, but often it is also contaminated with minerals such as iron and manganese, so it is always good to have well water tested. Many clients that are on a well have manganese toxicity show up on their hair mineral analysis. My husband and I’s first hair analysis come back very high in manganese due to our well water. We no longer drink or cook with our water from the well. Only filtered water for us!
I also want to encourage you to use glass or stainless steel water bottles. At home, I drink out of a quart size mason jar (I love mason jars), but that doesn’t work as well on the go because a mason jar doesn’t fit in my car’s cup holder. On the go, I use a stainless steel water bottle knowing that I am taking the chance of the stainless steel leaching metals. I know that there are those glass water bottles that have the silicone sleeve. I just haven’t gotten one yet, but definitely want to. I don’t think people should be using plastic water bottles, because of the BPAs and BPSs in plastics that can be very detrimental to our health.
Bisphenol-A (BPA) is an “obesogenic” chemical, linked to weight gain, diabetes and obesity. It has the following detrimental attributes:
- It is a synthetic estrogen
- It can block or mimic natural estrogen in the body
- It is a well-established endocrine disrupting chemical
Low dose exposures of BPA are linked to:
- Early onset puberty
- Increased risk of breast cancer
- Male birth defects
- Prostate cancer
- Heart disease
- Insulin resistance
- Low birth weight
- Increased in hyperactivity
- Increased in aggression
- Increased in anxiety
- Increased in depression
If you need or want to buy water Mountain Valley Spring Water does come in a glass bottle.
- Nutritional Therapy Association, Inc. Training program
Disclaimer: The information contained herein is not to be construed as medical advice and is not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any medical condition. These statements made have not been approved by the FDA, nor should they be taken as a substitute for medical advice from a licensed physician.
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