Friday, 1 August 2014

How much water should I drink?

With the weather continuing to be hot and steamy we thought it might be a good idea to have a review of your water intake. So here's a little recap on why you want to make sure you drink enough water.

When the weather is hot, we lose water through sweating to keep our body temperature stable and so we will need to replenish our water supplies more than we do when the climate is cooler.

We are all told water is essential for good health but why? Your bodies principle chemical component is water and makes up at least 60% of your bodies weight. In essence our actual structure floats in water. Water is held in all our bodily systems and is required for every chemical reaction that occurs. Water flushes toxins out of vital organs, carries nutrients to your cells, is required in the making of new cells, transmits messages to and from the brain and provides a moist environment for the nose, throat and ears.

Lack of water can lead to dehydration. A sure sign you are dehydrated is a dry mouth and this means your body will not be performing optimally.

So how much water do you need?

Water is constantly lost from the body via breathing, perspiration, urine and bowel movements. So to keep our 60% we must replenish our supplies by eating and drinking. On average we need 1 litre of water for every 25kg of body weight, (in a temperate climate such as the U.K.). This however does not mean you need to drink litres of water daily! The water in your food counts too. Fruit and vegetables are very high in water as well as being full of vital vitamins and minerals.

Making sure you drink enough water can also help with back pain as the discs in your back - which absorb all the pressure from standing upright - have a high water content and if you are dehydrated these will not be able to absorb as much pressure and so you will take more pressure through the joints of your spine which can lead to discomfort.

Another hidden benefit of water is, that if you need to, water helps you lose weight! It is a natural appetite suppressant and helps metabolise stored fat.

Why and how does this work?

Without enough water your kidneys cannot function correctly. In essence the kidneys job is to filter out 'the junk' in our bloodstream, ridding us of toxic waste!

If the kidneys cannot work to capacity some of their load is dumped on the liver, which is also a detoxifier. However the livers primary function is actually to metabolise stored fat into usable energy. If it is doing the kidneys work it cannot do its own. The result-more fat gets/remains stored.

Moral of the story......Drink (more) Water!

Rachel Hodson MChiro DC BSc (Hons)  Rachel Hodson is a Chiropractor at the Octagon Chiropractic Clinic

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