Updated: Sep 2
My favorite topic by far--the amazing benefits of water and why you should be drinking plenty of it now! Replenishing your body with water has an abundance of benefits including the promotion of healthy weight loss, the improvement of skin complexity, increasing your energy, preventing headaches, relieving fatigue, flushing out toxins, maintaining regularity in digestion, boosting your immune system, and puts you in a good mood--the advantages to proper hydration are endless! Did you know that our bodies are composed of 60% water? The human body requires water for so many parts of our lives, responsible for distributing nutrients throughout our body, decreasing out appetite, and regulating our body temperature. It only takes a 2% loss of fluid of our bodyweight to adversely affect our blood flow and decrease performance.
It is recommended that male adults receive at least 3 liters (about one gallon) of water per day and women receive at least 2.2 liters (about 2/3 of a gallon) of water per day. Of course these quantities are only guidelines and you should always adjust your hydration needs based on your goals, current activity level and environment. For example, a 300-lb. bodybuilder might have greater hydration needs than a 150-lb. office worker--the key to proper hydration is to drink water consistently throughout the day to sustain energy and aid in performance. Listen to your body and remember to drink water every hour up until you’re getting ready for bed. Depending on how light or heavy of a sleeper you are, cut off your water intake off about 60-90 minutes before bedtime to avoid those lousy midnight sprints to the bathroom through the darkness!
Now let's talk about dehydration! This condition decreases your blood's volume and pressure, affecting your heart’s ability to function normally. It causes a significant increase in heart rate, decreasing your cardiac output (overall performance of the heart), and it increases your perceived rate of exertion. Normal things that you could do before with no effort will require more of your energy. Without proper hydration each day, we are placing our bodies in harm's way and causing them to work harder instead of more efficiently. Our bodies have magnificent abilities and they require us to care for them with the upmost priority. Be sure to get your recommended dosage of H20 not only to avoid those nasty side effects of dehydration but to reap the amazing benefits that water has to offer, allowing you to perform at 100 percent!
1. McGill, E. (2017). NASM Essentials of Personal Fitness Training. Chandler, AZ: National Academy of Sports Medicine