Water is essential for human life. It makes up between 45% to 75% of our body weight and plays a vital role in our metabolism, temperature regulation, and organ function. Yet, despite its importance, many people don’t drink enough water every day. In fact, dehydration is a common problem, especially among older adults.
So how much water should you drink each day? The answer depends on a few factors, including your age, activity level, and the climate you live in. For example, if you live in a hot climate or exercise frequently, you’ll need to drink more water than someone who lives in a cooler climate and is relatively sedentary. However, a good rule of thumb is to drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water daily (64 ounces). This is known as the 8×8 rule and is an easy way to ensure you’re getting enough fluids.
The Advantages of Staying Hydrated
Staying hydrated doesn’t mean you have to drink water exclusively. While water is the best source of hydration, other fluids may also contribute to your daily water intake. These include fruit juices, vegetable juices, milk, and tea. That said, water has some unique benefits that make it the best choice for hydration. For one, it’s calorie-free. It also contains no sugar or artificial sweeteners, which may be harmful to your health in large amounts.
As if water’s essential role in human life isn’t enough, there are many advantages to drinking enough water each day, including:
Regulating Body Temperature
Water helps to regulate our body temperature by sweating. When we sweat, evaporation occurs and cools us down. This process is how our bodies prevent overheating, especially in hot weather or during exercise. Drinking water throughout the day helps us have enough fluid in our bodies to produce sweat and regulate our temperature.
Water is necessary for proper digestion. It helps break down food so our bodies can absorb the nutrients we need. In addition, water aids in the elimination of waste. When we don’t drink enough water, constipation may occur. Drinking plenty of water also entices our bodies to urinate more frequently. While this may seem like a nuisance, it’s actually a good thing because it helps flush out toxins and keep our urinary tract healthy.
Keeping Joints Lubricated
Water is also necessary for the lubrication of our joints. When we don’t drink enough water, the cartilage in our joints may become dry and brittle. Synovial fluid is a type of fluid that helps keep our joints lubricated and provides nutrients to the cartilage. This fluid is primarily water, so it’s important to stay hydrated to keep your joints healthy.
Improving Cognitive Function
Water accounts for 75% of our brain mass and is necessary to help your brain cells communicate with each other. Moreover, water assists in clearing out toxins that may lead to cognitive problems in the brain. When you are well-hydrated, your decision-making skills and memory improve. You may also find it easier to concentrate.
Staying hydrated helps your body eliminate bacteria and other toxins that may cause infections. When you don’t drink enough water, your urine becomes concentrated and more likely to contain bacteria. This increases your risk of developing a urinary tract infection (UTI). Drinking plenty of fluids also helps to thin mucus, reducing your susceptibility to colds and other respiratory infections.
When you are dehydrated, your body doesn’t function as efficiently. For instance, your heart has to work harder to pump blood when you are dehydrated, and the flow of oxygen to your brain may be reduced. As a result, you may feel fatigued if you don’t drink enough water. Furthermore, staying hydrated is the key to preventing muscle fatigue. When you are adequately hydrated, your muscles can work at peak efficiency. Water also aids in recovering after a workout, so if you are feeling particularly tired after going for a run or lifting weights, make sure to drink plenty of fluids.
Maintaining Organ Function
Almost all of our organs need water to function properly. For example, water helps enhance our liver and kidney function by making it easier for these organs to filter toxins. Drinking enough water is also necessary for the functioning of our digestive system. Additionally, staying hydrated helps to keep our skin healthy and prevents conditions like acne. From lubricating your joints to boosting heart health, adequate water intake is crucial for optimal body function.
Elevate Your Overall Wellness With Outset
While staying hydrated is important for overall wellness, hormone therapy from Outset may also help you feel your best. If you struggle with fatigue, weight gain, or other symptoms of a hormone imbalance, our team can help you find an Outset provider in your area. Contact us today and begin your journey towards an elevated state of wellness.