Water: The most important beverage


As the weather gets warmer and days are longer, we need to make a conscious effort to remember to hydrate and drink water. By the time you are thirsty, you are probably two glasses below your normal water needs.

Drinking water helps to prevent kidney stones. Studies have shown that areas where it is hot, people are more prone to kidney stones than in areas where it is cooler due to dehydration.

An adult male is made up of 65 percent water, an adult female is 55 percent, and a baby is 78 percent. Breaking up parts of our body, the brain and heart consist of 73 percent water; the lungs, 83 percent; skin, 64 percent; and even bones have 31 percent.

How can you tell if you need to drink water? When a person loses 2 percent total body fluid, signs include thirst, loss of appetite, fatigue or weakness, chills, skin flushing and dark colored urine.

At 5 percent, there is increased heart rate, decreased sweating and urination, increase in body temperature, muscle cramps, headache, nausea, dry mouth, head rushes, and tingling of the limbs.

When you lose 10 percent of your body fluids, you need to go to the hospital. You may have muscle spasm, vomiting, racy pulse, shriveled skin, dim vision, painful urination, confusion, difficulty breathing, chest and abdominal pain and may lose consciousness.

Drinking water before bedtime helps your body store nutrients and minerals and helps your body replenish fluids it loses throughout the day. The body is at rest while you are sleeping so it does not need to excrete as many fluids. While sleeping, water has the time to reach every part of your body and replenish it fully. In time, this will make you sleep more soundly and leaving your muscles, vitamins, minerals in harmony.

There are two schools of thoughts about the temperature of water to drink. Indian Ayurvedic medicine and Chinese medicine say to drink warm water so the body is not shocked.

On the other side of that is the thought that drinking cold water is a natural caloric burner because the body needs to work harder to warm up, increasing the rate your metabolism burns up calories. If you drink cold water before bed, your body will begin to work extra hard to warm up, increasing metabolism. It also helps you relax and leaves you feeling rejuvenated in the morning. Whatever you believe, follow it as long as you drink water!

Drink water when you first get up to flush out toxins that have accumulated all night.

Drink water before each meal to make you feel fuller and help to prepare your stomach for the food that will follow. It also helps your mouth of dryness.

Drink water with a snack before you eat a snack. Sometimes the body is just thirsty and not hungry.

Drink water before a workout to prevent dehydration. Drink water again after workout.

For every 30 minutes to one hour of exercise, your body needs an extra 500 ml of water.

During an illness, make sure you drink a lot of water. Remember what the doctor said, “drink lots of fluids.” Water helps your body recover from various infections and if you are dehydrated, you will feel worst!

Water could also be tea, juice or soup. If there is a beverage that makes you want to urinate more, do not drink it, drink water instead.

Drink water when you are tired. Water can reach your brain and cold water can wake up your body.

You can see that the recommendation is to drink throughout the day. Hydrating this way is less stressful on the heart and gives your body time to absorb it.

Train your children to drink water instead of juice or soft drinks. Start good habits at a young age.

Pregnant and nursing mothers need additional amounts of fluids, about 13 cups of fluid if breastfeeding.

No wonder babies and little children have sippy cups. We adults all need sippy cups also and constantly sipping water as much as possible to stay hydrated! If you sit in an office, have a cup with a cover to prevent any spills, filled with water. I carry around my cup everywhere and every night, leave a full container next to our bathroom sink. Whenever I wake up to go to the bathroom, I take a sip before I crawl back to bed. That way, it is “fluids out, fluids in!”

I hope reading this article will you make you think of drinking water all the time.

There a couple of ways to know if you are drinking enough water: your urine should be very light with a tinge of yellow, and pinch yourself. It should bounce right back. If it stays pinched, you need to drink more water.

FOODIE BITES

Speaking of drinks, if tea is your choice of beverage, JoAnn Kawamura Aguirre is opening a cute tea shop, Teaching Tea, in Manono Marketplace, 697 Manono St. #108B. She is having her grand opening from 12-6 p.m. Saturday. The shop will be open from 12-6 p.m. Wednesday- Saturday, except on the second Saturday, when the shop will be open from 4-8p.m. For those of you who want high tea, this is the place to be to buy a variety of tea as well as other related tea-related items. I know JoAnn for the Big Island Tea Society. She is very knowledgeable and is passionate about teas. Please visit her at her new shop.

Please feel free to e-mail me at wilson.audrey@hawaiiantel.net if you have a question. Bon appetit until next week.

 

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