Let’s start with what you know -- Drinking water not only fills you up but also lessens your appetite. It aids digestion, stops your skin from getting dehydrated, has restorative powers, peps up your circulation and flushes out toxins responsible for contributing to cellulite and water retention. And that, gurlz, is just the tip of the iceberg.
You can tell when you are not getting enough water just by taking a look in the mirror. If your skin has dry spots, your complexion looks chalky and the foundation seems patchy, chances are it is dehydrated. Even oily skin can suffer from dehydration, and this can drastically affect enzyme activity. Water evaporation may then speed up and cells may become rigid, allowing external aggressors to penetrate skin more easily, resulting in serious dryness and irritation. The way out – lots of water. Counterbalancing natural water loss is imperative. Also, experts agree that giving the skin at least a litre and a half a day is all you need to make it bloom. The skin also donates stored water to other organs when they need it. This explains why most spas rely heavily on water for most of their treatments.
Apart from affecting the way you look, water also keeps your body healthy. It regulates temperature and blood pressure, lubricates joints and eyes, and dissolves nutrients that are then absorbed quickly. All you need is around eight glasses a day to replace what your body loses. Interestingly – and somewhat disturbingly – many of us confuse thirst with hunger and end up eating something rather than drinking. The thing to do, then, is not wait until you feel thirsty, but try drinking a glass every hour. An increase in water intake will also lead to a reduction in your craving for tea or coffee.
Stick to water that is just below room temperature instead of refrigerated water, because this helps your body absorb more. Also, remember that water abounds in all fruit and vegetables, so eating a lot of these boosts your fluid intake.
For those wondering how a large part of our bodies is made of water, it is contained in our cells (intracellular fluid), arteries and veins (blood plasma), and in the spaces between blood vessels and cells (Interstitial fluid). Everything we do leads to the creation of waste products that are taken away with the help of water. As water also helps maintain normal body temperature, it is essential for carrying waste out of the body. It acts as a solvent for the vitamins and minerals we need daily in order for our cells to do what they have to. Waste that is not discarded, for whatever reason, is stored somewhere within our bodies and contributes to everything from diabetes and lower back pain, to colitis, chronic fatigue syndrome, headaches, asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, allergies, depression, neck pain and high blood pressure.
This explains why a human being can survive without food for about five weeks, but cannot survive without water for more than five days. The older we get, the more water we need while, strangely enough, the less thirsty we feel. Ponder that for a while. As we age, our skin and mucous membranes become thinner and lose more water, and our kidneys function less efficiently. While a person under age 50 needs around 8 glasses a day, those older are asked to take 10 glasses or more. For those on a diet, one more reason to go crazy about water – It is a necessary part of the body’s fat utilization process. Water assists the body in metabolizing stored fat.Dehydration can also occur while flying, which is why it is important to drink a glass of water for each hour you spend in the air. Also drink plenty when you have the flu, to replace the fluids you lose through sweating and vomiting.
The hotter it is outside, the more you need to drink in order to help your body cool itself better. This also helps prevent urinary tract infections, as people get infections when the urine sits in the bladder too long and bacteria builds up. If water is so useful, why are its health benefits discussed more often? The answer may lie in the fact that it’s free, so advertising benefits no one. Headaches are often caused by dehydration, but we have been taught to take a tablet to cure them when a couple of glasses of water can do the trick.