Just like our beloved planet, our bodies are composed of about 70% water (give or take 5%) with our brain requiring substantially more, and just like every nutrient in your body, both need to be replenished and flushed through our system on a daily basis, to optimise performance.
Insufficient water intake can result in many symptoms of disease and stress and therefore increase the chance of disease and illness being established.
With the constant (and never ceasing) escalation in chemicals and pollutants, we need to upgrade our recommendations for hydration to reflect today’s modern day environment.
From the toxins pumped into our foods and onto our crops, not to mention the poisons in our creams and shampoos, we are slowly contaminating and poisoning our bodies. We live in a fast food nation, with water being pushed aside for the more flavoursome fizzy drinks, coffees and everyone’s favourite, alcohol!
Even beverages that we are led to believe are beneficial to our health are either processed or high in sugar. Most juices have a high sodium content which can actually make the body even more dehydrated, thus requiring even more water.
Even with a clean living lifestyle, body size, body weight, sex, and genetics play a crucial role especially if performance is involved. Exercise frequency and intensity of the individual or the climate in which they live also need to be considered.
The formula to working out your quantity is pretty simply.
Bodyweight in Kgs x 0.033 = Litres required per day.
For example, an 85kg man needs 2.8 litres a day whereas a 55kgs female would need 1.8 litres a day.
Not taking into account all the above information.
If this is a figure you are close to, awesome! If this is something that is going to need work to get to, then I would suggest to go slow and take your time over 2-4 weeks to get there. It would also pay no harm to visit your GP if you are on any medication, especially if you have any trouble with your kidneys – that filter the fluids in your body. Your body is going to need time to adjust to this increased volume.
One of the most beneficial sides to full hydration is weight loss! HOWEVER, the body, having not been used to consuming this amount of water will try to retain it thinking you will soon go back to dehydration. Bear with your body as it acclimatises to this new level of hydration. Once the fat cells are sufficiently hydrated, they will be more prone to being utilized as fuel.
Thirst and hunger are controlled by the peripheral nervous system, and often when the body is thirsty, we may misinterpret this as hunger and go eat instead of drink. As water can act as an appetite suppressant, try drinking a large glass of water next time you feel hungry. Wait about 10m and if still hungry, grab a healthy bite to eat.
Try to keep your consumption of water clean, filtered and never directly from the tap! Ideally at room temp and preferably not from a plastic bottle which can leach chemicals into the bottle... Not to mention the effect on our environment. Happy Hydrating!!