We’re talking water – sorry, not alcohol, even though a gin and tonic with ice and a slice can be quite refreshing!
When we’re told to drink more water, it can seem such a chore and a mammoth challenge to actually drink the amount we’re told to by the experts. About 80% of our water intake comes from, well, drinking – the rest is from food.
Just how much is enough?
I follow a nutrition programme called Metabolic Balance. They recommend 35ml of water to 1kg of body weight. I’m 60.5kg, so my daily intake is: 2.2 litres give or take few millilitres. Nigel, my stress and mindfulness star, says he is 95 kg although I think it’s more! and his intake needs to be about 3.3 litres.
A rule of thumb is that if your urine is clear or a very light yellow colour then you are drinking sufficiently for your body.
What goes out needs to be replenished
We lose water all the time! Breathing alone loses between 300ml and 500ml a day. Peeing accounts for about 1.5 litres of water loss a day whilst an hour’s exercise loses probably nearly 2 litres through sweating which helps keep you cool. The intestines need water to help keep our stools soft which means easy to pass – pooing loses about 5% of our water.
Stress is not great for keeping water for three reasons. When we’re stressed we breathe more heavily which means we lose more water through breathing; the brain produces more of that dreaded hormone cortisol when it lacks water which makes you feel lousy; and we simply don’t drink (or eat) well when we’re stressed.
What are the benefits of drinking water?
- Good looking skin
- Energised muscles (by taking oxygen and nutrients there more efficiently)
- Efficient metabolism
- Helps digestion
- Burns fat and calories
- Normal bowel function
- Flushes out toxins from the kidneys
- Detoxes the liver
Pimp up your water!
To be honest with you, most people find water a bit dull. Here are some ideas to pimp up your water to make it a little more interesting and drinkable without resorting to using fruit squashes with added sugar or sugar substitutes.
- Cool as a cucumber – cucumber slices
- Minty fresh – fresh mint sprigs
- Zesty pick me up – fresh orange, lemon, lime or pink grapefruit
- Strawberry fields forever – strawberry slices
- Berry crush – a few raspberries, strawberries and blueberries mashed
- Pimms H2O – a sprig of mint, cucumber, a piece of orange and some fresh strawberries
- Watermelon, melon, apple and pineapple are other favourites
Water on the go
Bottled water is a very expensive way to drink water and we need to think about the impact on our environment with single use plastics clogging up our oceans and filling up landfill.
The answer is to get yourself a decent water bottle and take it with you everywhere – then you’ll stop yourself getting dehydrated and spending cash buying bottled water. Get one that’s PVC and BPA free to avoid nasty chemicals leaching into your drink and one that doesn’t leak or spill down your front when you take a sip!
Enjoy rehydrating and let us know what you’re putting in your water to quench your thirst! (Nigel says he is keen on hops and yeast in his – which I told him doesn’t count!).
Want to educate your workforce?
I love giving talks and workshops on health and sharing my knowledge. If you would like me to come to your place of work and give a talk, then please CLICK HERE for more information.