Hello and welcome back to Health and Wellness Fridays! It has been a rainy day for most of the day here but I won’t let that keep me back. We just have to make the most of each day regardless.
Today, we’re getting a mouthful of this week’s topic – water. An individual’s water needs vary with age, sex, weather, activity level, and overall health.
What is water exactly?
Water is a colourless substance made of hydrogen and oxygen, in the ratio of two to one. It covers over 70% of the Earth’s surface and is essential to all known forms of life. Did you know that the percentage of water in a man’s body is different to that of a woman? Men have a higher water composition than women. Interesting!
Here are some benefits of drinking water:
- Hydration of the body
- Maximize physical performance
- Prevent and treat headaches
- Helps in digestion and constipation
- Reduce hangovers
- Assist with weight loss
- Relieve fatigue
- Improve your mood
- Flush out waste and toxins
- Regulate body temperature
- Promotes healthy skin
- Lubricate the joints
- Reduce the risk of kidney stones
- Helps protect the spinal cord and other sensitive tissues
- Combat bad breath
Water is doing more than just quenching our thirst. Although many of us worry that we may not be drinking enough water, in turns out we need to be just as mindful of drinking too much water. Is it even possible for water to have side effects? Apparently, the answer to that is YES. Take a look at what I found.
Possible side effects of drinking too much water include:
- Overhydration (drinking too much water) which can result in water intoxication also known as hyponatremia. Some people experience swelling or discoloration in their hands, lips, and feet. In severe cases, water intoxication can lead to debilitating health problems such as seizures, coma, and even death.
- Cause cells to swell which is dangerous for the body
- Reduce potassium levels
- May cause hypokalemia symptoms of which may include: vomiting, low blood pressure, paralysis, nausea, and diarrhea.
- Put strain on the heart
- You might get headaches
- Increased urination
- Cause muscle spasms and cramping
- Chlorine in water may increase cancer risks
- Can affect proper functioning of the kidneys
- Make you feel tired
Drinking water is a must because our bodies need it to stay healthy. However, drinking too much water can hurt us. According to Tamara Hew-Butler, DPM, PhD, an exercise science professor at Oakland University, “… Thirst is every body’s individual monitor that lets them know if they need more. The more water you need, the thirstier you get.”
If you’re drinking a healthy amount of water, the colour of your urine should be straw-coloured to transparent yellow.
I’ve heard people say they don’t like drinking plain water. You can add a lemon slice to your water to give it a little flavour but not drinking water is a definite no, no. I agree that some water can be obtained from the consumption of beverages however, when possible they should not substituted for the real deal all the time.
Healthy alternatives to sugary beverages include adding hydrating fruits and vegetables such as tomatoes, cucumbers, watermelons, zucchini, eggplant, cantaloupe, bell peppers and so much more. Find a balance and your body will thank you for it. 🙂
Which type of water is safe to drink – tap water, bottled water or filtered / purified water?
I cannot answer that because there are so many variables and factors that affect the quality of the water we drink. With tap water there is the possibility of contaminants such as bacteria, parasites, lead and mercury just to name a few. With that said I don’t think there is anything wrong with adding a water filter/ water purifier to your home as an added precaution to reduce the risk.
Some of you may know that not all bottled water brands are created equal. There are a number of variables that separate one from another, from electrolytes to acidity levels so do your research and consume the brand you are comfortable with. I did come across a few sites that did their own bottled water tests. If you’re interested you can visit Review.com and Thrillist.com.
I hope that today’s segment on water was refreshing and that it quenched your thirst for knowledge. 🙂
Have a great weekend! Thanks for stopping by.