The Power Of Water
It helps with weight loss
Anyone looking to lose a few pounds could be helped by increasing their water intake. Studies have shown that when participants drink water before a meal, they lose weight at an increased rate than those who did not drink water. Extra H2O makes us feel full and helps us eat less, and it may also boost metabolism. CamelBak hydration advisor Kate Geagan, RD says it’s not uncommon to put on weight by mistaking thirst for hunger, and she offers this pro tip: Next time you feel fatigued or sluggish, “drinking water may be just what [you] need to perk up.”
It powers our warm-weather exercise.
While working out in the heat is usually fine you should always take the proper precautions —one of the most important things you can do is stay hydrated. When working up a good sweat during your exercise it’s very important to replace those lost fluids. Determining sweat rate informs good rehydration strategy: “Once an athlete [knows his or her] sweat rate, they can begin to practice replacing these fluid losses in training and be optimally prepared for [athletic exertion],” says Casa.
It keeps your digestive track moving.
Water helps us “do the do” by helping dissolve soluble fiber and fats. Drinking enough water helps flush waste products, reduces the burden on the kidney and liver along with helping prevent constipation. Geagan breaks it down: “In the large intestine, water binds with fiber to increase the bulk of the stools, reduce transit time and make elimination easier. When you don’t drink enough water and fluids, the colon pulls water from stools, increasing your risk of constipation.”
It helps endurance athletes fight fatigue.
Water is an essential part of most any workout routine, and it becomes particularly important in order to avoid dehydration during extended workouts. When exercising for an hour or more, drinking water treated with carbohydrates and salts (by mixing in tablets such as Nuun, or making a DIY version) can assistance in maintaining fluid balance, which supports athletic performance and helps prevent post-exercise fatigue and exhaustion.
Could it help prevent some type of cancers?
Research has found that the greater the fluid intake, the lower the incidence of bladder cancer, with more noteworthy results when the fluid is H2O. One possible reason could be that urinating more frequently prevents the buildup of bladder carcinogens. Staying hydrated may also reduce the risk of colon cancer and breast cancer.
It can improve mood.
Drinking water makes us feel so refreshed that it actually improves our state of mind. You don’t even have to be severely in need of it to benefit: Even mild dehydration has been shown to depressingly effect moods.
drinking it may help prevent headaches, naturally.
For some people, like me, go to long without drinking water will start getting headaches; and has also been identified as a migraine trigger. The good news is that in a study on the effects of water on headaches, participants experienced “total relief” from their headaches within 30 minutes of drinking water (two cups, on average). Geagan says a good way to prevent headaches is to stay hydrated throughout the day. And if you’ve already been hit with a dehydration-triggered headache, you’ll need significantly more water to help it go away. She recommends drinking two to four cups of water for headache relief within one to two hours. A good practices is to drink a tall glass of water or bottle each morning before eating anything.
It help keeps our kidneys working.
Kidneys remove waste from our bodies, help regulate our blood pressure, and balance fluids, so they’re vital to keeping our systems running smoothly. One definite way to keep them working properly? Sufficient water consumption! So drink up to keep those kidneys working.
It energizes us.
Next time you’re feeling drained and dead, don’t reach for that five dollar star bucks coffee, try drinking a couple glasses of water. One of the first signs of dehydration is feeling tired and filling back up on H2O could zap the sleepiness.
It may help keep us alert.
If you’re going to need to concentrate for long periods of time on school work or blogging, keep water handy to help you stay restored, hydrated, and focused: Dehydration can impair your attention span, memory, and motor skills.
It shields our joints and cartilage.
Water keeps the cartilage around our joints hydrated and flexible, ensuring that our joints stay lubricated. It also protects our spinal cord and tissues, keeping us healthy from the inside out. Geagan explains that cartilage—the rubbery material that coats our bones—is about 85 percent water. We need to keep hydrated to keep this protective material healthy.
It powers our cold-weather workouts.
Most of us think of those sweaty, summer workouts as the ones we should be guzzling water from a gallon jug before, during, and after. But staying hydrated while exercising in the cold is crucial, also: One of the ways our bodies lose water is through respiration, and when we exercise in the cold, we’re working harder under the extra layers of clothing and breathing more heavily as a result. I work in a freezer running to fill pallets for a major food supply store and if I don’t force myself to drink water because if I don’t I start cramping really bad. But even though we’re doubling down on fluid loss, one study found that cold weather weakens thirst. The result? We’re working hard, losing water, and not getting any body cues to drink up, which can lead to dehydration.
It takes the edge off of hangovers.
This one I will have to take at face value because I don’t drink, while doing my research for this article I found that drinking alcohol causes dehydration, which can lead to hangovers. Having a glass of water with each alcoholic drink you sip is one way to offset the dehydration (and the day-after misery). I also heard that strong black coffee can help.
It helps us think more clearly.
Dehydration causes shrinkage of brain tissue. So when we haven’t been drinking enough water, our brains have to work a lot harder to perform at the same level. One study even found that students who brought water to tests did better on their exams. While in college I was lifting weights in the gym and trying to drink a gallon a day, I would bring the jug to my classes, people will notice.
Eating it hydrates us—deliciously.
Water-rich fruits and vegetables like apples, grapes, cucumber, watermelon, and strawberries contain minerals, salts, and natural sugars the body needs for optimal hydration levels, so eating them can sometimes rehydrate us more effectively (and a lot more tastily) than water alone.
It helps balance our fluids.
About 60 percent of the human body is made of water, and keeping our fluids balanced means that all that water is doing its job—transporting nutrients, aiding digestion, regulating temperature, and so on.
Can drinking water keep us heart healthy? There seems to be a link between risk of death from coronary heart disease and water intake: Research has shown both that consuming more water means a lower risk of death from coronary heart disease and that risk of death rises when intake of “high-energy fluids” (like soda and juice) increases . So instead of going for that red bull or monster reach for a bottle of water in the morning to wake your body and mind up.