The simple act of drinking more water brings many benefits to your body. Water is essential for all bodily functions – it keeps organs clean, helps to regulate body temperature and wards off infection. On average the human body is made up of 60% water, so if you don’t keep it topped up and refreshed by drinking more water, you will start to feel unwell. If you don’t drink enough water, you may start to experience signs of dehydration, including headaches, nausea, cramps and insomnia.
Water retention is in fact a symptom of dehydration, too. When water intake is sporadic or lacking, the body looks to store what it can. By drinking more, and regularly, you can avoid water retention, thus making you less lethargic, less bloated, and feeling more able to do things.
Imagine your body as a radiator. When you fit a new radiator, it needs filling with water. Over time, it keeps recycling the same water to do its job, as the water isn’t replaced or refreshed. Your body isn’t too dissimilar. It has fresh fluid coming in, so keeps that and gets rid of the old. If you bleed a radiator, the water rarely comes out clear. Those times when you nip to the loo and notice your pee has a strong smell or is really dark in colour are an indication that more fresh input is needed. It didn’t go into your body with that colour, so it shouldn’t come out with that colour.
At the other end of the scale, your urine output shouldn’t be completely colourless, as the whole point is to remove waste product. Keeping an eye on what your body is discarding is the best indicator to show if you’re drinking the right amount of water.
If you don’t drink enough water and become dehydrated, the most dangerous effect is the loss of blood volume in the body, which can in turn lead to excess pressure on the heart to deliver oxygen to the organs and muscles.
Plain water doesn’t appeal to everyone, but you can flavour it with fresh fruit, or even a little cordial – whatever it takes to help you drink more water. A couple of cups of tea per day are acceptable too, but in addition to your water intake rather than in place of it.
Treat your body as you would a plant – give it enough water to help it thrive.
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