Doctor Mom? Remembering when….
As I sit here drinking another bottle of water, I recall a few anecdotes that I haven’t only grown up with but have taken to heart as a kind of accepted programming. Two that stand out are “an apple a day keeps the doctor away” which I’ll address in another article; and the other; “make sure to drink eight, 8 ounce glasses of water a day.” It’s funny how these things get engrained in us and for the most part – they are pretty close to the mark.
So the big question today is, will 8 – 8 ounce glasses of water hydrate me enough to live a healthy life? Well, the short answer is yes, but there’s more to it. What’s important to note is just how water effects our bodies when we’re without or when we have enough.
Dehydration Can Be Lethal
Did you know that water makes up about two-thirds of your body? It has many cool roles such as lubricating your joints and eyes, keeping your skin healthy; eliminating toxins and even assisting in proper digestion. However, once you start reducing it in your daily routine your body lets you know.
Now, this is in no way a replacement of advice given by your physician, and if you experience any of these symptoms, please see a doctor.
Feeling thirsty is typically the first sign, although sometimes it goes unnoticed. But dehydration can happen fast if it’s allowed to continue. Our bodies will generally warn us – we just need to recognize the signs. For example, mild dehydration signs are dry mouth, fatigue, irritability, dry skin, headaches, constipation, dizziness, reduced urine quantity, and even cramping. Much of that for which we seek medication or self-medicate, could be substantially alleviated by increasing our water intake.
Severe and/or chronic dehydration can lead to sickness and even death. It will affect your moods, eyesight, blood pressure and breathing, and can cause fevers, delirium and even loss of consciousness. So stop for a minute while you’re reading this and go have a glass of water. No, really.
Water Is Life
Unless you’ve trained yourself in the habit of drinking water throughout the day, it is almost guaranteed that you’re operating at a less than optimal level of hydration. Even if you drink water whenever you are thirsty, you may be experiencing symptoms of low level dehydration. Commit this one habit to routine and experience the benefits in almost every facet of your life. Sounds too good to be true? Try it.
Water will help combat fatigue, lower high blood pressure, reduce the severity and even eliminate headaches, combat allergies including asthma, improve skin tone and reduce acne. It will reduce high cholesterol, eliminate digestive disorders, flush out bacteria, speed up healing of injuries, lubricate joints and repair cartilage, assist in weight loss, slow the aging process and even help you sleep. You can spend thousands of dollars at drugstores and pharmacies, risking heinous side effects, or you can partake of the most abundant substance on Earth.
Again, if you haven’t already – stop reading this for a minute and go have a glass of water. Go!
So, how much should you drink every day? Here are some suggestions.
Remember, there are myriad studies that have produced varying recommendations about your individual water needs, and it does depend on many factors, including your general state of health, your daily activity levels, and the climate in which you live. No single formula fits everyone, but knowing the benefits of water – we need to work with recommendations and adjust from there.
Although these recommendations also cover water coming from other fluids and food, 80% or more should be fresh water intake alone. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine has provided the following guidelines:
|Who?||Recommended||About 85%||8oz Cups||17oz Water Bottles|
|Men||128 ounces||110 ounces||14 cups||7 bottles|
|Women||80 ounces||70 ounces||9 cups||5 bottles|
|Women (breastfeeding or pregnant)||104 ounces||90 ounces||12 cups||6 bottles|
|Children 4-8||40 ounces||35 ounces||5 cups||3 bottles|
|Children 9-13||60 ounces||50 ounces||7 cups||4 bottles|
|Children 14-18||80 ounces||70 ounces||9 cups||5 bottles|
What about the 8 – 8oz cups a day?
What our moms told us when we were teenagers was approximately right- for a teenager. But once we grow beyond our teenage years – we might want to set our sights a bit higher. So mom was right! Sort of….
Encouragement and Tips
Consistency is the key. We are creatures of habit. Making a concerted effort to properly hydrate includes keeping track on a daily basis. And, no matter how hard you try to remember, there will be days when you forget. So many of our resolutions end this way. The key is to keep at it until it becomes part of our lifestyle. If you miss a day – start again. If you miss a week – start again. If you…- start again! For most, it doesn’t happen over night. It’s one day at a time; sound familiar? To assist you in succeeding on this life changing journey, we’ve create the Clean and Social water intake program. This is available in our apps as well as on our website. You can also discuss it here in our forum or learn more about hydration here
You can set your goals, receive reminders and even let people know you’ve done it – every day! We know you can do it – and we’re using it ourselves! We drank and used in order to change the way we felt. This will change the way you feel- for the better. Do it for yourself. You deserve it!