The human body is approximately 60% water, which is why getting enough water throughout the day is highly important for the body to not only survive, but to function at its best.
Most people have a hard time drinking enough water to meet their needs. The most common complaint is that it doesn’t taste good. Before I share ideas of how to spruce up the taste of water, I want to discuss the importance of water and how much you need to drink to prevent dehydration.
The Roles Water Plays in the Body
Water is practically everywhere in the body. It is found inside and outside of our cells.
Water’s main roles:
Source of minerals
The Body Thrives on Balance
The human body likes to be in balance. It doesn’t like to be too hot or too cold, too acidic or too alkaline, have too much sugar or too little, and too much water or too little.
It is constantly trying to maintain equilibrium. So, what outside factors influence the body’s water balance?
food, especially fruits and veggies
Impact water balance
What is dehydration?
Dehydration occurs when you do not consume enough water to meet your needs. Dehydration can be life threatening.
Minor symptoms of dehydration:
dark colored urine
Major symptoms of dehydration:
kidney and liver failure
Benefits of Drinking Water
Besides the fact that the human body absolutely needs water to function, there are several benefits that you might not have heard of before.
Help you lose weight
Improve your energy and mood
Improve the appearance of skin
Enhance brain function
Boost your immune system
How much water do we need?
There are several ways to calculate water needs, but I’m going to go over a simple one.
Take your weight in kilograms (kg) and multiply by 30-40 milliliters (mL). For example, if you weigh 60kg, you will need 1,800-2,400 mL or 1.8-2.4 liters (L).
Or, take half your weight in pounds (lbs) and divide it in half to get ounces (oz) needed. For example, if you weigh 130lbs, you will need 65oz. of water.
Drink 0.5L 30-60 minutes before you exercise.
Drink 0.5L every 30 minutes during exercise. Depending on the activity type and temperature, you might need to take in electrolytes, such as Gatorade.
Drink 0.5L-1.5L per hour to replace water loss from sweating and exhalation during exercise.
How to make water taste better?
For those of you that don’t like the taste of water, try adding a non-calorie flavor enhancer such as crystal light. You can also drink non-calorie flavored seltzer water. My favorite way to drink flavored seltzer water is to add half of a pack of pink lemonade crystal light. It’s super tasty and refreshing.
Another fun way to add flavor to your water is to add fresh fruits. This slightly alters the taste of water and provides you with a sweet treat afterwards.