6 Reasons Water is Good for Better Health
Water is life, explaining why almost every American carries bottled water on the go.
It’s ranked second after a soft drink in terms of popularity. Recently, a study revealed that drinking water has been oversold. And, the recommendation to drink eight glasses daily is merely a guideline without scientific backing.
Before you put your glass of water or bottled water down, we must acknowledge that it’s essentially beneficial to human health. This is true whether you prefer your water plain or in the form of foods or fluids.
Available in the form of plain water, liquids and foods, water is a nutrient your body needs to function optimally. You need to drink water daily to replace what’s lost through sweat or skin evaporation, urine, breathe, stool, and other ways.
Dehydration occurs when the water you drink doesn’t equal what your body loses. Some factors that promote water loss from the body include:
- Strenuous exercise
- Warmer climates
- Age as in older adults with a less sharp sense of thirst
- High altitudes
If you’re wondering whether it’s really necessary to drink enough water daily, here’re a few reasons to get you motivated:
Top 6 Ways Drinking Water Benefits the Human Health
Maintains Body Fluids Balance
The human body is made up of 60% water. Together with other bodily fluids, water supports various functions as follows:
- Digestion and absorption
- Saliva formation
- Blood circulation
- Body temperature regulation
- Nutrients transportation
The brain communicates with your kidneys through the posterior pituitary gland. It sends signals that tell the kidney how much water to hold onto for body reserves or excrete through urine.
The brain transmits signals that indicate thirst when fluids in your body become low. Drink juice, water, coffee, milk, or any other fluid whenever you feel thirsty. This applies unless you’re on medication that triggers your body’s thirst mechanism.
Whichever drink you opt for, avoid alcohol because it can hamper communication between your kidneys and the brain. It can also trigger excess fluids excretion, leading to dehydration.
Water has been touted as an essential weight loss factor. Although it doesn’t have a magical impact on losing weight, it’s useful when consumed instead of beverages with higher calorie content.
Eating a diet rich in water-based foods such as non-caloric beverages or water over a caloric drink, you’ll cut your calorie intake. Water-rich foods are more filling and healthier, explaining why they support weight loss.
Although foods with high water content appear larger, they’re healthier. The high volume of such foods requires extended chewing, meaning the body absorbs them slowly to keep you full for longer. Foods with more water and low calories include:
- Broth-based soups
Energizes the Muscles for Added Strength
Body cells with a poor balance of electrolytes and fluids shrivel, causing muscle fatigue. Muscles with insufficient fluids experience poor performance.
When exercising, drink enough water or other fluids to keep your body hydrated. According to the American College of Sports Medicine fluid intake guidelines, drink enough fluids pre-and post-workout.
The college recommends drinking 17 ounces of fluid approximately a couple of hours prior to exercise. You should also drink more water at regular intervals during physical activity to keep your body hydrated despite water loss through sweat.
Moisturizes Skin and Improves its Texture
The skin is a protective barrier that prevents the loss of excess fluids. It requires hydration because it’s made up of water.
Drinking water makes the skin look good and younger. However, it doesn’t erase fine lines and wrinkles but can reduce their formation.
Water prevents and improves the effects of dehydration, mainly wrinkled and dry skin. The kidney then excretes only excess fluids when you’re well-hydrated.
Moisturizers lock moisture into your skin to create a physical barrier that prevents water loss to keep your skin moisturized.
Improves Kidney Function
Water and other fluids transport waste products in and out of body cells. A water-soluble waste known as blood urea nitrogen is the main toxin the body produces. It passes the kidneys easily for excretion through urine.
The kidneys are responsible for cleansing the body to eliminate toxins with the help of sufficient fluids. Urine flows freely, is odorless, and has a light color when you drink enough water or fluids.
However, the color, concentration, and odor of urine increase when you become dehydrated. This is attributed to the fact that your kidneys hold more fluids to support the functions of the body.
Dehydration puts you at an increased risk of developing kidney stones, even in hot or warm weather.
Improves and Maintains Normal Bowel
Hydration keeps your body working, especially along the gastrointestinal tract. It also prevents constipation. The colon draws water from stools to improve and maintain the hydration of your body. Otherwise, you risk developing constipation.
Combine fiber and fluids to hydrate your body and improve your bowel function.
How Much Water Do You Need on a Daily Basis?
You can source your fluid needs from fruits and vegetables, beverages, and water. The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine advise women to drink 2.7 liters or 12 cups of fluids daily.
On the other hand, men should drink 3.7 liters or 16 cups of water every day. With the U.S. Army Public Health Command’s Urine Color Test, you can assess whether you’re drinking enough water or not.
Light to pale yellow urine color indicates that your body is hydrated. But, dehydration is typical of darker yellow urine color. A medical emergency can arise, hence the need for medical care. Cola- or brown-colored urine indicates that there’s a need for medical attention.
Make sure you only drink soft water for its range of benefits. It’s also pure enough to prevent problems related to your health. However, make sure you know what kind of unit you’re using for salt-free drinking water.