Proper Hydration

Many Americans live from day-to-day in a dehydrated state, and have no idea how much water they should be drinking for their health.  Conventionally, we are taught to drink at least eight, 8 oz. glasses, water every day.  As we become more informed as to what is best for our bodies and what is not, several sources suggest that we drink 1/2 ounce of water per pound of body weight per day.  For example, if a person weighs 100 pounds, he or she would need to drink at least fifty ounces of water per day.  Fifty ounces converts to a little more than six 8 oz. glasses.

“Soda Pop” — If you drink it, you need to increase the amount of water you drink by 2 oz. for every ounce of soda.  It is also high in sugar content; diet sodas contain sugar substitutes which are unhealthy.

Water is vital to our digestion and our metabolism.  It carries nutrients and oxygen to the cells through our blood stream.  Water regulates our body temperature and lubricates our joints (*Important to note whether you are arthritic, athletic, or have chronic muscular-skeletal problems).  You need to drink water to breathe because you lose approximately one pint of liquid every day by just inhaling.

No Substitutions

Avoid caffeinated beverages, i.e., caffeine acts as a diuretic.  You lose water through increased urination; however, caffeine over-stimulates the adrenal glands.

Also, it is wise to avoid drinking alcohol because it has similar effects as caffeinated beverages.

Avoid carbonated soft drinks and sport drinks.  Even when it’s warm outside, cold water is the best fluid to keep you hydrated.  (Cool water is absorbed much more easily than warm fluids because the cool temperature of the water has a positive effect on cooling off an already overheated body.)

Tea of any kind is not a good substitute for your daily requirement of fluids.

Fruit juice can dehydrate the body because of the high-sugar content.  It also causes your pancreas to become overworked.

How to Tell If You Are Sufficiently Hydrated?

Remember these three characteristics:

  • Clear
  • Colorless
  • Abundance

The easiest way to know if you are sufficiently hydrated is when your urine takes on the three characteristics noted above.  At first, the hypersensitivity of the bladder results from increased fluids.  After a few weeks your bladder will calm down, urinating less frequently, but in larger amounts.  Use caution:  Do not drink more than four glasses of water in any given hour.

What Does Proper Hydration and Weight Management Have in Common?

If not hydrated sufficiently, you can impair every aspect of your body’s functions:

  • Excess body fat
  • Poor muscle tone and size
  • Decreased digestive efficiency and organ function
  • Increased toxicity in the body
  • Joint and muscle soreness (especially noticed after exercising)
  • Water retention

Tips for Daily Maintenance of Proper Hydration

  • When perspiring, drink water (at least 2 cups per pound lost following your workout)
  • Start and end each day with a serving of water (your body loses water during sleep).
  • Common colds and flu can lead to dehydration (Keep a bottle of water near you to sip on throughout the day).
  • Drinking cold water, in warm weather temperatures, cools down your overheated body.

Are you a Drinker?

  • 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated
  • In 37% of Americans, the thirst mechanism is so weak that it is often mistaken for hunger
  • Even MILD dehydration will slow down your metabolism as much as 3%
  • Lack of water is the #1 trigger of daytime fatigue
  • Preliminary research indicates that 8 – 10 glasses of water a day could significantly ease your back and joint pain — 80% of the sufferers researched found this to be effective
  • A mere 2% drop in body water can trigger fuzzy short-term memory, trouble with basic math, and difficulty focusing on the compter screen or on a printed page
  • Drinking 5 glasses of water daily decreases the risk of colon cancer by 45%; slash the risk of breast cancer by 79%; and 50% less likely to develop bladder cancer

DOES YOUR BODY CRY FOR WATER?

COKE (The pause that refreshes?)

Here is a list of what Coca-Cola is used for:

  1. In many states, the highway patrol carries two gallons of Coke in the truck to remove blood from the highway after a car accident.
  2. Put a T-bone steak in a bowl of Coke and it will be gone in two days.
  3. Clean a toilet bowl with a can of Coca-Cola — let the “real thing” sit for one hour, then flush clean.  The citric acid in Coke removes stains from vitreous china.
  4. Remove rust spots from chrome car bumpers — rub with a crumpled-up piece of aluminum foil dipped in Coca-Cola.
  5. Clean car battery terminals with a can of Coca-Cola poured over the terminals to bubble away corrosion.
  6. Loosen a rusted bolt by applying a cloth soaked in Coca-Cola to the rusted bolt for several minutes.
  7. Remove grease from clothes by emptying a can of Coke into a load of greasy clothes, add detergent, and run through a regular cycle.  The Coca-Cola will help loosen grease stains.  It will also clean road haze from your windshield.

FYI:

  • The active ingredient in Coke is phosphoric acid.  It has a pH of 2.8.  It will dissolve a metal nail in about four days.
  • The commercial trucks that carry Coca-Cola Syrup (the concentrate) must use the “Hazardous” material place cards reserved for highly corrosive materials.
  • The distributors of Coke have been using it to clean the engines of their trucks fo about 20 years!

DO YOU STILL WANT TO DRINK UP?

Sources:

Andi, Parade Magazine, Salt Lake Tribune, l, October 22, 1989

Center for Holistic Instruction, http://www.chioline.com/water/news.html – Hydration/Dehydration, 2001

Proper_Hydration, www.universalwater.net/htm, 2005

The Nutrition Information Center, The New York Hospital, Cornell Medical Center, http://www.chionline.com/water/news.html, 2005

Are you a Drinker?  Still ……. Want to Drink Up? www.watercure.com

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