A majority of people nowadays are suffering from the severe nutritional deficiency of dehydration – even if they are drinking a lot of water. The truth is that water comes in many forms, good and bad, and staying hydrated is a science. Understanding how your water affects your body’s internal ecosystem could be the difference between optimal health and chronic, degenerative disease according to doctors. This guide to achieving optimal hydration should help in measuring your required daily water intake and drinking the right kinds of water.
Your Minimum Daily Water Intake Equation
The human body is mostly made of water, a known fact. Between 55% and 75% according to scientists. It only makes sense that people need mostly water to survive. It’s the body’s most precious resource. So how much water should a person take in every day? 8 glasses a day seems to be dropping off as the standard for hydration measurement. What people are going by lately is the following equation:
Your Body Weight (in pounds) / 2 = Your Daily Minimum Intake (in ounces)
So a woman that weighs 130 pounds (65kg) should drink a minimum of 65 ounces (2 litres) of water every day. It is also important to start your day by drinking 25% of your daily minimum intake. So this 130-pound woman should drink 16.25 ounces of water first thing after waking up. The body dehydrates during sleep, which is why it is important to jump start the rehydration process every day.
Not Just Any Old Water
Water comes in many forms – distilled, filtered, tap water, etc. The kind of water you drink heavily affects how your body processes it and benefits from it. Distilled water for instance, is actually detrimental to your health because it is void of dissolved solid mineral content (electrolytes). Before your body can process it, it must inject some of its own mineral content into the water before it can absorb it. So instead of replenishing your body it is actually robbing it of nutrients.
Drinking water should have between two hundred and three hundred milligrams of dissolved solids per liter – about a pinch per glass. The best way to ensure that your water is fit for human consumption and optimal hydration is to add a pinch of organic salts (Celtic Sea Salt and Himalayan Salts are often mentioned) to each glass or bottle. This will add the electrolytes your body needs.
Adding lemon juice will give your body some alkalinity, which is better for your health than the constant acidic state that most people suffer from. It has also been shown that there are benefits to drinking water at room temperature, rather than iced. Finally, be sure to filter your water to remove harmful contaminants. Some even recommend getting a filter for your shower too, since harmful solubles can be absorbed through the skin.
5 Tips to drink more water
- Drinking water must be the first thing to do in the morning
- Drink on regular intervals
- Drink even if you’re not thirsty
- Drink water before every meal
- Drink water before going to sleep
To Eat and Drink Means to Steal or Nourish
Everything else you ingest throughout the day affects whether or not your body can achieve optimal hydration. High sugar drinks can paralyze enzyme functions within your digestive system and they also require dilution from your body’s own water supply in order to process them, much like distilled water takes minerals. So fruit juices and sodas can do harm from multiple angles, but especially when it comes to actively dehydrating you.
This holds true for salty foods as well. Processed and packaged foods that contain a lot of sodium must absorb water from your body in order to be broken down. It is just another reason why they should be avoided when possible. Sports drinks are detrimental when it comes to this, because while they may have electrolytes, they are also very sugary and have a lot of sodium. They will definitely not help with optimal hydration.
Caffeinated and alcoholic beverages are called diuretics because they increase urination. Frequent urination dehydrates, so if you drink anything caffeinated or alcoholic be sure to replenish with at least 75% more water by volume than what you drank earlier. If you have 8 ounces of wine, drink 12-16 ounces of water later. Another form of diuretics are prescription drugs. If you take any medication that increases urination frequency be sure to drink enough to compensate.
While packaged and processed foods should be avoided, there are other foods that will help your body achieve optimal hydration. For instance, many nutritional fruits and vegetables are 90% or more composed of water, so eating them will hydrate you. Homemade soups and broths, seasoned or filled with hydrating herbs and vegetables, are also a great source of nutrients that will curb your appetite and help you achieve optimal hydration. You can always check our guide on How To Properly Drink Water Throughout The Day.
Always Be Prepared
Your body can only metabolize 8% of the water it needs on a daily basis, while the other 92% is left up to you – the foods and water that you ingest. The right water holds many benefits for the human body. You may be suffering from chronic dehydration an not even know it. Suffering from illness, disease, and allergies can be alleviated, if not nullified, through optimal hydration. Be sure to always carry your BPA-free water bottle and a packet of mineral salts.