“Success is not about your resources. It’s about how resourceful you are with what you have.” Tony Robbins
We are water. We are made up of about 70% body fluid, and every organ depends on water to function. Water regulates body temperature, helps carry oxygen to the cells and flushes toxins from the system. Since we lose water all the time through sweat, urination or even through an expired air, we need a constant rehydration to ensure that the body and mind work well.
Water increases brain function and energy level The human brain is made up of 90% water, and it thrives on good hydration to function effectively. Studies have shown that even a mild dehydration has a negative impact on our mood, energy levels and decision-making process. Dehydration releases a stress hormone called cortisol so if we feel stressed, irritated, tired or simply struggle to focus, having some water will bring instant positive results. Drinking water also helps relieve headaches and migraines.
Water helps lose weight A rule of thumb: the more water we drink, the less hungry we feel. Drinking a small glass of chilled water about 30 minutes before each meal decreases appetite. Researchers had shown that people who drank 500 ml of water before meals lost 44% more weight in 12 weeks time, compared to those who didn’t.
Water breaks down fat and fat byproducts accumulated in the body and boosts our metabolism. This simple process helps burn more calories throughout the day. It’s best to drink cold water as the body will have to generate more energy to raise the water temperature to that of the body.
Water helps maximise physical performance Water increases endurance through maximising physical performance. Keeping the body hydrated especially during exercise helps control temperature, decreases fatigue and keeps us motivated.
When we exercise, we lose water, so we need to drink more. The American College of Sports Medicine recommends 16 - 20 ounces at least four hours before exercise and 3 - 8 ounces every 15 minutes during exercise (especially in hot temperatures).
Water keeps us healthy Drinking water helps reduce the risk of skin problems such as acne, urinary infections, constipation or even cancer. Studies show that drinking more water reduces the risk of colorectal and bladder cancer and the formation of kidney stones. Water flushes toxins from the body ensuring an effective urine excretion throughout the kidneys.
How much water should we drink per day? Although the recommended daily intake is eight 8-ounce glasses or 1.9 litres per day, the exact amount of water depends on age, weight, health condition, and is very individual. Up to 20% of the daily water intake comes from the food we eat so we have plenty of alternative options to choose from like fruits, vegetables, soups, yogurts or eggs.
Here are five foods rich in water:
1. Cucumber This vegetable has one of the highest water content; composed of 96% water, cucumber is also high in vitamin E, K and B6, iron and essential oils. You can have it in salads, smoothies or snacks
2. Celery Celery stalks are about 95% water, and are high in fiber, folate, potassium, vitamin A, C, K
3. Tomatoes Tomatoes contain 94% water and are rich in vitamin C and antioxidants, especially lycopene
4. Spinach Spinach has more than 92% water and is high in antioxidants, calcium, potassium, iron and vitamin B
5. Watermelon This fruit is made up of 92% water. A study from University of Aberdeen has shown that watermelon is an excellent source of potassium, calcium, magnesium, vitamin A, C and salt
Fruit and vegetables often lose their nutrients when cooked or boiled and are best consumed raw. Be resourceful, drink a few sips first thing in the morning, with and between your meals. Listen to your body, don't dismiss the signs.
When you are thirsty, you are probably already dehydrated.