Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Staying Hydrated

I've always been a water drinker. Ever since I read in Seventeen magazine about what feels like a hundred years ago, that drinking lots of water would give me glowing, model skin I've taken water pretty seriously. Speaking of Seventeen, remember when Whitney Houston was all over that magazine? I wish I had my old copies saved, that would be a fun trip down memory lane.

I have a tap-mounted PuR water filter that I find so handy so I have no trouble getting at least six to eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day. I also count herbal tea/tisane toward that total. I don't count juice, hooch or anything carbonate/caffeinated toward my fluid consumption.

Staying hydrated is essential to good health. Eating a high fiber diet sans enough water can lead to constipation. Water is essential for the absorption of vitamins and minerals that we take in through the eating of healthy foods. Proper amounts of water help the liver and kidneys keep the body free of toxins. Water can cut down on headaches and back pain which can be a sign of dehydration. Trying to lose weight? Sometimes hunger is thirst in disguise, so taking in a cup of herbal tea or a nice glass of cool water can help keep us from eating when we really aren't hungry and water is needed for the metabolism of fat. Drinking plenty of water after exercising can help cut down on lactic acid buildup which leads to muscle soreness. And yes, drinking enough water keeps skin moist and healthy.

I've heard the argument that drinking too much water will make you spend all day in the bathroom. This can be true to a certain extent. If you're not getting adequate fluids and start adding more water into your daily routine, you will notice that you'll be hitting the loo more often. But once you reach and maintain your water-intake goals, you body will adjust and it will no longer be an issue.

Some people complain about not liking the taste of water. I don't think good quality, pure water has a taste, so I never really got that one. Try flavoring water with orange, lemon, lime, cucumber, fresh mint or watermelon. Just fill a pitcher with water and add any or all of the aforementioned goodies and pop it in the fridge. Cheers!

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