Our bodies are almost 60 percent water. So, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that we need water every day for optimum physical and mental health. But as we age, our bodies lose a significant amount of moisture, which can place us at risk for a host of health issues.
In summer, it may be necessary to reassess your daily hydration habits. Take this moment to consider how getting enough water – or getting too little – can impact your health, and what you can do about it.
Water Wealth for Health
With enough water, our bodies can function at their best. Proper hydration empowers our bodies to regulate our temperature, heart rate and blood pressure. Water also plays a big role in the transportation of vital nutrients and oxygen to all of our cells. All these things are the foundation for a healthy metabolism, strong cardio-vascular system and longer life.
Proper hydration has even been linked to higher concentration, better recall and positive moods. So, water makes a pretty strong case for its importance in our lives. In many ways, it can be seen as the glue that keeps us together!
Without enough water, our bodies have to work much harder to keep us going. According to studies, just feeling thirsty can signal that you’re dehydrated enough to experience reduced mental performance. And just 4 percent dehydration can bring with it lethargy, sluggishness, concentration problems and even fall risks.
Severe dehydration over time can invite all kinds of problems, such as kidney and urinary tract infections, constipation, and kidney stones. Remember that if you are thirsty, you are already experiencing mild dehydration. It’s also helpful to pay attention to the color of your urine. Your urine should be clear to pale yellow; dark urine may indicate dehydration.
Tips for Getting Enough
For many, staying hydrated isn’t as easy as taking a drink of water. People are often distracted by work or other life demands, and before they realize it, they are feeling the effects of dehydration. But better hydration is possible for all.
For years, we often heard the “8 x 8 rule,” or that we need eight 8-ounce glasses of water per day for good health. But science doesn’t support that rule, since about 20 percent of our water comes from other sources, such as food. An orange is 90 percent water! So, it is believed that drinking five to eight glasses per day is sufficient for most.
Here are some tips for staying hydrated:
Since everybody has different needs based on age and living conditions, it’s important to speak with a physician to determine how much water would be ideal for you. Hydration is vital to our lives. But water flows all around us, so a healthier life may be just sips away.