HealthThe health benefits of keeping your body well hydrated

The health benefits of keeping your body well hydrated

The health benefits of keeping your body well hydrated

With spring well and truly here, we are spending more time outdoors and for most people the warming temperatures encourage us to be more active. We are largely made up of water (about 70 per cent) therefore it stands to reason that for our bodies require good hydration to function properly.

However, it is amazing to think that there is a large part of the population that are chronically dehydrated, which can impact not only our cognitive function but our energy levels, our bowel movements and result in muscle cramps. Water is vital for our health as it allows our blood to carry important minerals and vitamins around our body, to the organs and tissues that need them to function properly. But, dehydration can easily be remedied and this week I will be looking at various ways it affects our health and well-being as well as some simple tips to remedy this.

Water can play a vital role for people who are looking to lose weight, as not only is it an appetite suppressant, so for those who are aiming to cut down snacks in between meals, having a glass of water instead is very beneficial. Losing weight is the process by which the body burns our fat stores to provide us with energy, however for this to happen, the bodies’ cells require water for this process known as lipolysis (burning of fat cells) to occur.

Waste products found in our blood, are filtered through our kidneys and released from the body as urine. When we are dehydrated this puts more pressure on the kidneys when filter out waste, as toxins can then build up over time and even create kidney stones and urine infections.

Constipation can also be a sign of mild dehydration, as our digestive system requires fluids to push the digested, proteins, carbohydrates, and fats, through it. Good hydration also improves our absorption of nutrients and vitamins, and again allows our body to get rid of any waste products through our faeces. So, by simply increasing our fluid intake we can easily improve their bowel movements.

As we can get outside more, good hydration will also improve any physical exertion, as during exercise, our muscles, ligaments, and connective tissue such as the heart and lungs, require water to work properly. Dehydration during and after exercise can result in muscle cramps and soreness and a general sensation of not feeling well.

Various factors can influence how much water we need, such as age, activity level, humidity, general health, and sun exposure. Here are a few tips for those who do not like drinking water:

  • Include more fluid rich meals in our diets, such as soups, smoothies, and stews
  • Foods such as celery, cucumber, tomatoes, watermelon, and salad are very high in water content
  • Adding frozen fruit or herbs such as mint to water will give it a little flavour

This blueberry kale salad is very high in water content.

This simple blueberry kale salad is easy to make and full of delicious foods helping you to increase your fluid intake.


Send your nutrition questions to susan@susanalsembach.com

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