Growing up, we were taught the standard rule of drinking 8 glasses of water per day. As adults, many have learned that there are different factors involved such as weight, physical activity, geographical location, and more. Regardless, hydration is the answer to daily problems, such as fatigue, weight, fogginess, and dry skin. Unfortunately, many continue on the same path—excessively dehydrated—unaware of the true effect that water has on the human body. Drinking enough water each day can have life-changing effects, including promoting daily wellness and health for the future.
Our brains themselves are made up of 85% water, therefore has a great effect on our cognitive abilities. Unfortunately, because our brains cannot retain water itself, we would have to consistently rehydrate to sustain the desired level of mental clarity. If we become dehydrated, our brains immediately start to feel an effect, or what is called a “brain fog.” According to Neurosurgeon Imran Fayaz, all it takes is a 1% dehydration for our body to experience a 5% decrease in cognitive function and a 2% to experience short-term memory loss. The more dehydrated we are, the more damage we are doing to ourselves over time. Fayaz claims, “Prolonged dehydration causes brain cells to shrink in size and mass, a condition common in many elderly who have been dehydrated for years.”
Water not only supports clarity and focus but also prevents fatigue and low energy. An example of where peak energy is crucial is during physical activity. Our body relies on consistent hydration from water intake to keep our muscles energized to maintain that energy. Dr. Barry Sears explains, “Your cells need adequate hydration to optimize the production of energy from food.” Without hydrated cells, our body has more difficulty producing sources of energy, and in return, makes us feel fatigued. Feeling fatigued can also cause other symptoms such as irritability, anger, depression, and anxiety.
Everywhere we look, there seems to be a new skincare product that promises to keep our skin hydrated and ageless. By using sunscreens, natural makeup, and hydrating products, taking care of our skin will always be a trend. Saying this, at the end of the day it will always come down to drinking enough water. Many don’t realize that drinking water can have a noticeable impact on our skin. When we are dehydrated, our skin can lose its elasticity and suppleness, appearing more aged and wrinkled. In fact, dry skin can be quite visible due to a majority of our internal water being lost through our skin. Keeping our skin hydrated will ensure brightness, plumpness, vibrancy, and a youthful look overall.
Those who are trying to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight will find that being well-hydrated plays a big part. Water has many effects on the body to help keep weight down, such as boosting the metabolism, suppressing the appetite, reducing fluid retention, and aiding the digestive system to eliminate fat from the body more efficiently. As dehydration causes fatigue and low energy, it makes it harder for our body to want to get up and put in the effort to exercise. Therefore, dehydration keeps us from burning calories towards weight loss or maintenance. A board-certified physician nutrition specialist, Melina Jampolis, claims that staying hydrated during exercise helps to dissolve electrolytes, such as sodium, potassium, and magnesium, by “distributing them throughout the body, where their electrical energy triggers muscle contractions required for movement,…” Without hydration, our body can have various problems, including cramps and even heat stroke, depending on the severity.
While there are numerous effects that dehydration has on the body, it is easily possible to eliminate them to change how we feel physically and mentally each day. If you are someone who has difficulty drinking plain water, adding fresh fruit is an easy and delicious way to liven up water. Seltzers or sparkling waters are a great hydration option as well. However, try to avoid any drinks with juices or sugar as these will only dehydrate you further, not to mention add more calories. Apps can also alert us when to drink water for those who are busy and forget during the day. Whether we’re drinking for thirst, weight loss, skin care, or to reach our daily limit, there’s never a bad time to drink water.
Author : Jennifer Dutton, Blog Writer, DrinkLyte Co. "Helping Grow CPG Brands Beyond Their Potential"