The human body is made up of 75 percent water and your blood is 90 percent water. Water is essential to every cell’s sustained health. While you can live without food for weeks, you need water every day to thrive and within a few days to survive. A person will die of dehydration if he or she doesn’t have water in as few as three days. Water helps us look younger, feel younger and have more energy.
We lose water when we perspire, when we go to the bathroom and even when we breathe. Mild dehydration can start with just a one to three percent water loss. That’s why it’s so important to keep replacing that lost water. I don’t know about you, but I just feel better overall when I stick to my hydration routine.
Benefits to staying hydrated
One of the greatest benefits of drinking enough water each day is how it helps you to look younger by preventing dry skin and improving skin tone. However, great-looking skin is just one of many important benefits of staying hydrated.
1. Helping you look younger
Great skin is the key to looking younger. If your skin is wrinkled and dry, no amount of makeup is going to give you that youthful look you crave. The good news is that staying hydrated is the best skin care routine possible…and, it’s a lot less expensive than name brand wrinkle creams and cosmetic beauty treatments.
Staying hydrated keeps your skin cells from drying out and being more prone to wrinkles. It also helps your skin’s elasticity, which helps prevent sagging. Good hydration also keeps your skin cells full and plump, which helps you avoid getting that “sunken” look as you age.
A good hydration routine also helps to prevent blemishes and can even help clear up skin with acne, according to the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. It’s not an exaggeration to say that those eight glasses of water daily are like a fountain of youth.
2. Improving skin tone.
In addition to keeping skin from drying out and improving elasticity, drinking plenty of water will also improve your skin’s tone and color. Good hydration flushes toxins from your body and also increases blood flow to your skin cells, which will help you retain that youthful, rosy complexion and even skin tone.
3. Flushing toxins from your body.
Your kidneys need water to be able to do their job, which is flushing toxins out of your body. These include environmental contaminants as well as substances in food and beverages. With adequate water, your kidneys collect these toxins and flush them from the body, leaving your blood toxin-free to power your organs and cells.
4. Promoting good heart health.
Good circulation is also essential to good skin health…and good circulation means good heart health. Drinking your eight full glasses of water each day helps your heart to function more easily and without stress.
Not drinking enough water each day also reduces the volume of blood that’s circulating throughout your body, and this also makes your heart have to work harder to get oxygen to your body’s cells and organs. Drinking plenty of water dramatically reduces your likelihood of having a heart attack, stroke or other cardiovascular event.
5. Helping you stay more alert.
Even slight dehydration can cause significant changes in your cognitive abilities. Some of the first signs of dehydration are confusion, moodiness and difficulty remembering things.
Drinking an adequate amount of water can also help you ward off anxiety and depression. It can also help you be more calm and content and less prone to stress.
6. Increasing your energy level.
Keeping your energy level high is important to looking and feeling young as well as to getting everything you want to accomplish done in a day. Staying hydrated helps with that by keeping your mind alert and your muscle energized. When your cells have all the oxygen they need (from good circulation), every part of your body will feel better and more alive.
7. Aiding in healing.
Another important benefit of staying hydrated is how it assists in healing. Whether it’s a wound or a virus, you’re body’s immune response ramps up your system and consumes more water than normal.
If you also have a fever, you’ll need even more water. In addition, drinking plenty of water helps to ward off ailments like kidney stones, headaches and colds.
How to drink water for glowing skin and other health benefits
With all of these benefits, including looking younger, who wouldn’t want to drink enough water each day? While drinking enough water every day may seem like a chore, you can easily accomplish this if you have a plan. When you start seeing benefits, you’ll be even more eager to stay on track.
1. Drink at least 64 ounces of water each day.
The anecdotal (and easy to remember) water guideline for healthy adults who live in a moderate climate is to consume eight, eight-ounce glasses of water a day. That’s 64 total ounces.
This assumes that you’ll get around 20 percent of your water requirement from the foods you eat. The clinical guideline is somewhat more complex. According to the National Academy of Medicine (NAM), men should consume 125 ounces of fluid daily and women should consume about 90 ounces of fluid daily. This includes fluid from water, other beverages and foods
Some foods provide more hydration than others. Watermelon, for example, is made up of 92 percent water. Strawberries are 91 percent water and cucumbers are 90 percent. Spinach, peaches, cantaloupes, skim milk and lettuce also have a high water content.
The best time to drink water for glowing skin is in regular intervals throughout the day. This keeps your skin from drying out in between hydration sessions. If you are exercising, you should hydrate at least once every 15 minutes.
While eight glasses a day is the guideline, it’s important to keep in mind that the optimum amount of water to drink each day is different for every person.
If you work in a physical job, if you spend a lot of time outdoors in hot weather or if you exercise frequently, you’ll need to drink more than the average daily recommendation. Men need more water than women, and pregnant women and nursing moms need more hydration than other women.
One final note on how much water to drink…it is possible to drink too much water. Although the threshold is rather high, drinking too much water can be deadly and cause your cells to drown in that life-giving liquid.
Avoid drinking more than 33 ounces (or one liter) of water within an hour. However, we caution you not to let this be an excuse not to drink your 64 ounces of water each day.
2. Skip the ice cubes.
Drinking lukewarm or room temperature water is best for staying hydrated. Drinking lukewarm water, rather than chilled water, aids in digestion and circulation and helps get water to your cells more quickly. In addition, warm water will help you feel less thirsty more quickly.
3. Add a little flavoring.
Some people just hate the taste of water…or the lack of taste. If this describes you, then I suggest you add a little natural flavoring to your water to enhance the taste. Of course, adding lemon slices to water is popular, but lemon isn’t the only choice.
Mint, ginger and other flavors can enhance the taste of water and even give you additional health and beauty benefits. Investing in a home or portable water filter can also help to improve the taste of your water.
However, some popular beverages made with water can have a dehydrating effect. These include coffee, tea and sodas. Not only do beverages with caffeine not provide hydration, they actually take moisture away from the body. Do you have to give up coffee to look young? No, but don’t overdo it and compensate by drinking extra water.
4. Carry a water bottle.
Having water handy throughout the day makes it a lot easier to stay hydrated. Make a water bottle part of your daily gear. That way you can take sips of water as you go about your daily routine, rather than having to gulp several glasses when you arrive back home.
You might consider one of the 64 ounce bottles. That makes it easy to gauge whether you’ve drunk your daily water requirement. When the bottle’s empty, you’re done.
5. Don’t wait until you feel thirsty.
It’s easy to think that your body will tell you when you need to drink, but feeling thirsty is one of the first signs of dehydration.
According to Lawrence E. Armstrong, Director of the Human Performance Laboratory at the University of Connecticut and an international expert on hydration, “Our thirst sensation doesn’t really appear until we are 1 (percent) or 2 percent dehydrated.
By then dehydration is already setting in and starting to impact how our mind and body perform.”
6. Drink a full glass of water before each meal.
If you’re having trouble scheduling all of that water intake, one way to make it easier is to drink a full glass of water before every meal. If you drink three meals a day, that reduces the rest of your intake to five glasses.
Add another one first thing in the morning and another before you go to bed and you only have three other glasses to work into the day. Drinking a full glass of water before each meal also has the effect of making you feel more full and, thus, less prone to overeating.
7. Track your water consumption with an app.
If you’re the type of person who enjoys using technology, there are a couple of apps that will make tracking your hydration easier. These include Daily Water, Hydrocoach and Aqualert.
All have a free version, and some also have a premium version with added features. They are all available for both Android and Apple devices.
Tracking your glasses of water with an app helps eliminate that mid-afternoon confusion about how many glasses you’ve already had today.