How to Drink More Water
Would you like to increase your water intake while reducing the intake of other drinks? Check out the tips below.
Why Drink more Water?
Consuming enough water – either through fluids or foods – is essential to your health, performance and wellbeing; It keeps you focused, helps to lose weight, helps you to exercise, may relieve headaches when you are dehydrated, decreases the risk of kidney stone formation, helps prevent and relieves constipation and prevents or reduces hangovers.
While water itself does not provide any nutrients, it is necessary for the absorption of nutrients, and often includes essential minerals such as calcium, magnesium and salt. Inside your body, water is needed for literally every metabolic process, whether it’s the absorption of a nutrient, a muscle contraction, or the firing of a neuron in your brain, your body needs water to do it.
Keeping you sharp
Nearly 80% of your brain consists of water and the working of your brain is strongly influenced by its level of hydration. Water and the electrolytes that come with it (minerals, salt and sodium) are involved in every chemical reaction in your brain. When you don’t drink enough fluids to stay hydrated you can experience headaches, dizziness, loss of alertness, reduced focus and loss of concentration. Sometimes you don’t experience anything at all, but still your brain slows down. According to a wide range of studies, even mild dehydration (1-3% of body weight) can impair memory and mood, and can increase feelings of anxiety and fatigue.
N.B. While drinking based on thirst might keep you alive and healthy, it will not guarantee optimal processing speed. To optimize your brainpower, drink throughout your day, and when you get thirsty, do not postpone drinking any longer, as your brain has most probably already slowed down.
How to Drink More Water
While drinking based on thirst might keep you alive and healthy, it will not guarantee optimal processing speed. To optimize your brainpower, drink throughout your day, and when you get thirsty, do not postpone drinking any longer, as your brain has most probably already slowed down. Here are five simple ways to help you succeed.
Tip 1 – Start your day with water.
Drink water in the morning as soon as you wake up. You have lost plenty of fluids during the night, chances are high that you are at last 1-2% dehydrated, and thus not ready to perform at your best. One 250ml glass of lukewarm water should get you off to a good start and is easy for your body to deal with, whatever the time of day.
Tip 2 – Carry your own water bottle.
Think of your water bottle as an extension of your outfit. Take it with you in the car, to work, to meetings, to the gym, and anywhere in between. Having your water bottle with you will eliminate any excuse not to drink. Fill it with water first thing in the morning and keep it near your laptop. This way you can drink while working throughout the day. The number of times you refill the bottle will provide you with the added benefit of monitoring your daily water intake. In countries where it is safe to drink, tap water is perfectly fine, by the way.
Tip 3 – Add flavor to your water.
If you are accustomed to flavoring, drinking plain water can feel like a chore. By adding flavor to your water, you might make it more interesting. Adding berries, strawberries, herbs (mint or basil), cucumber or citrus, can also be a great way of providing vitamins, minerals and extra antioxidants.
Tip 4 – Drink water with your coffee.
One of the easiest ways to increase your water-intake substantially, is to have a glass of water with your coffee. The reason it’s so easy, is that there is always water available where you get coffee, and chances are high that, if you are a coffee drinker, that you will have at least a few cups per day. Drinking water at these moments can easily increase your daily water intake by half a liter.
Tip 5 – Drink more vegetables and fruits.
Roughly 20% of the water that people consume, comes for their food. Eating vegetables is a very good way to increase that number. Next time you have a snack, consider baby carrots (water content: 90%), cucumber (96.7%), tomatoes (94.5%) or watermelon (91.5%).
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