March 22nd, 2017 | Diet & Health, Ask A Nutritionist
4 Hidden Benefits of Water
Water is the elixir of life. We can’t live without it, but most of us don't drink enough of it. There are many other options - such as soda, sports drinks, coffee - but why are we always told to drink water?
As a Nutrition Consultant, I commonly hear people say that they “don’t like water” because it doesn’t have a “flavor,” is “boring,” and “not interesting.” No doubt, water is more than just a tasteless beverage. Our bodies are made of 75% water, with our brain tissue being 85%. Even though we struggle to drink it, there's no denying how important it is to do so.
The benefits of drinking water might not be obvious. So, here are four ways that water enhances our physical and mental wellbeing:
1. Water Increases Energy
Even slight dehydration can affect the body leading to fatigue and reduced efficiency of cells, particularly the brain. Water plays a vital role in the utilization of water soluble vitamins, allows cells to work properly, reduces muscle cramps, regulates temperature, and much more.
When we are optimally hydrated our body functions better leaving us feeling energized both mentally and physically. Many people report increasing water and immediately feeling more alert and focused, no longer needing naps, and being able to exercise longer and better.
2. Water Helps With Weight Loss
Water is a powerful tool when you want to lose weight. Not only is it just plain good for us, it helps us feel full and naturally reduce portions.
Many sources suggest that drinking water and being properly hydrated increases our Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) which allows us to burn more calories at rest. (Your Amazfit measures your BMR based on your height, weight, and data history.)
Additionally, the body can commonly confuse dehydration and thirst leading us to overeat when we are actually thirsty.
3. Water Detoxifies
Water is a solvent and means of transportation. It not only helps move nutrients throughout your body, it also helps move waste and toxins out. Unfortunately there are toxins in our environment and we cannot get away from all of them, but we can put our bodies in the best place possible to remove them from our body. Excess toxins can affect energy, mood, sleep, weight loss, ability to focus on a task, and more. Frequently people experience weight loss plateaus and get stuck on their journey. This can sometimes be due to poor detoxification and one great way to influence this factor is to simply drink more water.
4. Water Helps Reduce Pain
Even slight dehydration can contribute to increased pain. A simple fluid loss of 10% or more can lead to shock, heart attack, hypotension, confusion and more.
Water acts as a lubricant and cushion for our joints, dilutes toxic build up that can affect pain, reduces cramping, headaches, and more. Many people who increase water notice large reductions in inflammation and pain within days of this habit change.
Can Water Be Replaced with Another Liquid?
From soda and sports drinks to coffee and juice, there's no shortage of alternatives. Unfortunately, none of these can serve as a replacement. If you don't like the taste of water, you can get creative and flavor it with some sliced fruit, cucumber, or juice.
So how much water should we drink?
The exact number is different depending on how active you are. Most sources suggest from 8-10 glasses a day. I tend to suggest about 80-100 oz. a day. If you are nowhere close to this, increase your intake slowly so you don’t feel like you're spending your entire day in the bathroom.
As with any change, be patient with yourself. Give your body time to adapt and get used to a more hydrated and healthy lifestyle. Thank yourself later, it'll be worth it in the end!
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Kasin Anton, Nutritionist
Kasin Anton is a Nutrition Consultant who is passionate about improving peoples’ lives. She specializes in identifying the triggers holding people back physically, emotionally, and psychologically in order to maximize energy, reduce pain, improve focus, and optimize weight. For more information, get in touch with Kasin at her website www.kasinanton.com.