The concept of water has always fascinated me. I’m not a swimmer, mind you, so this isn’t about becoming one with the ocean while competing in an Ironman Triathlon (though I admire my buddies who do). I’m talking about the sense of peace that descends from being near the ocean, believing that wishes made over coins thrown in historic fountains really can come true and considering Aquaman to be the ultimate hottie of cartoon superheroes. But nothing beats drinking the stuff, by the cup or gallon. Because unlike miracle pills or devices, this ubiquitous liquid really can help you obtain a healthier body for good.
As Professional Health Coach Lori L. Shemek, PhD, CLC, CNC of DLS Health Works, LLC explains, “Water is vital to weight loss success! Our bodies are mostly water – 75%. Mild dehydration equals inflammation, which causes weight gain. Most people are walking around mildly dehydrated and do not even know it, suffering from headaches, joint pain, fatigue, hunger foggy thinking and much more. Dehydrated cells cannot function optimally – they slow down and so does your metabolism. By drinking ample water, we are promoting the breakdown of fat. ”
Thirsty yet? I had to pause and chug a few hits from my water bottle before continuing on.
Curious about how much water should be consumed each day? While we’ve all heard the rule about striving for eight daily glasses, the Mayo Clinic says you might need more. For example, you need to drink extra water to compensate for fluid loss following exercise, which could be anywhere from 1.5 to 2.5 cups following shorter workouts. Personally, I feel my best sipping at least 12 glasses of water a day, and more following butt-kicking exercise.
Plus drinking water helps you feel full. “Many people confuse thirst with hunger,” adds Lori. “The brain has trouble distinguishing between the two so the next time you feel thirsty, drink water instead.”
Now that advice deserves a raised glass! What’s your hydration situation – reluctantly consume water when needed or guzzle the stuff like it’s going out of fashion? How has drinking water helped achieve your wellness goals?