Importance Of Drinking Water
You might be aware of the fact that water is an important element for survival, but what will surprise you, is the importance water truly holds. Water is the second most important life-sustaining element, following air. The reason water is so important to us is the fact that it’s a key element in our bodies. Water makes up about 60-80% of our bodies.
How Much Water Should You Drink?
The body is about 60% water, give or take.
We’re constantly losing water from our bodies, primarily via urine and sweat.
There are many different opinions on how much water we should be drinking every day.
The health authorities commonly recommend eight 8-ounce glasses, which equals about 2 liters, or half a gallon.
This is called the 8×8 rule and is very easy to remember.
However, there are other health gurus who think we’re always on the brink of dehydration and that we need to sip on water constantly throughout the day - even when we’re not thirsty.
As with most things, this depends on the individual and there are many factors (both internal and external) that ultimately affect our need for water.
Obviously the consequences of not drinking enough water are major.
What are the first signs of dehydration?
This is the body’s first reaction to not getting enough water, asking for it!
2. Dry Mouth:
Another sign that indicates dehydration is more and more pronounced.
3. Feeling Tired:
This is equal to the mechanism shutting down in order to spare the remaining water.
4. Feeling Worried, Irritable, And Nervous:
The nervous system relies on water to be properly functional; it is only understandable how not drinking water affects it.
5. Urine Color Change:
Urine is the way water leaves our body after it completes its work in the body.
Another sign of dehydration is a change in skin quality, especially elasticity, as well as the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines.
7. Headache And Dizziness:
Brain tissue loses most of its moisture and shrinks, pulling away from the skull, which later triggers headache and a feeling of dizziness resulting from a drop of oxygen being carried to the brain.
8. Fast Heartbeat And Breathing:
Yet another sign of the body’s not being functional.
9. Loss Of Consciousness:
This is one of the most obvious signs of dehydration, and is also indicating to a strong level of water loss.
How Much Water is Best?
At the end of the day, no one can tell you exactly how much water you need. As with most things, this depends on the individual.
Do some self experimentation. some people may function better with more water than usual, while for others it only causes the inconvenience of more frequent trips to the bathroom.
That being said, I am not sure if the small benefits of being “optimally” hydrated are even worth having to consciously think about it. Life is complicated enough as it is.
If you want to keep things simple (always a good idea), then these guidelines should apply to 90% of people:
- When thirsty, drink.
- When not thirsty anymore, stop.
- During high heat and exercise, drink enough to compensate for the lost fluids.
- That’s it.