Drinking plenty of water is essential to keep virtually every system in your body working properly, and not only in the warmer months. We take a look at the vital role water plays in your body.
Water is the most important nutrient in your diet. It performs countless vital functions in your body.
These include removing toxins and waste from your body, maintaining blood circulation, supplying other nutrients to where they’re needed, and regulating your internal body temperature.
Water is lost from your body every day through these processes. You need to balance your intake of water with how much you lose through urinating, sweating and breathing.
In summer, the higher temperatures mean you lose more water and you need to drink more to counteract this.1 In winter you may not need to drink quite as much, but staying hydrated is just as important.
The current recommended levels of water intake are 2 litres for women and 2.5 litres for men, per day.
You can boost your water intake with all kinds of fluids including tea, coffee and soup.Eating at least five portions of fruits and vegetables will also help you stay hydrated.
It’s really important to drink lots of water before, during and after exercising, especially in the heat. You should also consider using a sports drink containing electrolytes and carbohydrates.1
Here are the top five reasons why you should make drinking enough water a priority every day.
1. Drinking water can help you to control your appetite
Water-rich foods such as fruits and vegetables should form a large part of your diet, as around 20% of your fluid intake comes from the food you eat.3 Foods with high water content are actually more filling, meaning they can prevent you from wanting to snack between meals.4
Another top tip is to drink a glass of water as a first resort when you feel hungry, as your body often confuses thirst for hunger.5
To find out more about eating a healthy diet which suits your needs and requirements book a dietary consultation with one of our specialists.
2. Water energises your muscles
Having the right balance of water and electrolytes in your muscles helps them to perform at their best. That’s why it’s important to drink lots of water before doing exercise and to keep your fluid intake high during and after your workout.
Drinking water regularly helps to replace what you lose through sweating. A sports drink can be particularly effective at replacing lost electrolytes.6
3. Drinking enough water makes your skin look great
Dehydrated skin is more likely to appear dry and wrinkled. You can combat this by upping your fluid intake.6
Give your skin an extra boost by using a moisturising lotion to lock in your skin’s natural moisture, and protect your skin from the summer sun by using a lotion with a high sun protection factor - choose an SPF of 30 or more.
It’s important to remember, however, that water is not a miracle beauty product and over-hydrating can’t get rid of wrinkles and fine lines completely.6 Find out more about improving the condition of your skin with a dermatology consultation.
4. Water gives your kidneys a helping hand
Your kidneys purify your blood and remove waste products from your body by passing them into your urine. As long as you are fully hydrated, your kidneys are highly effective at removing toxins such as nitrogen from your body.
You’ll know if you’re drinking enough water because your urine will be light in colour and won’t smell.
If you are dehydrated for a long period of time you are more susceptible to issues such as kidney stones.7
5. Water helps your bowels function smoothly
Drinking enough water helps your digestive system work properly. When you are dehydrated it can cause uncomfortable issues such as constipation.
The perfect combination is eating lots of fibre and drinking lots of water. Together they are the best way to keep your bowels happy.7
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