The human body can survive without food for weeks but cannot go for more than a few days without water. Water makes up nearly 60% of a person’s total body weight and is the facilitator of digestion. It is also responsible for cellular health, regulating body temperature, and blood circulation.
While hydration is important daily, it is especially significant during summertime. Fluid loss occurs more quickly in the warmer months. Dehydration can be detrimental to bodily functions and in extreme cases, fatal. A safe general recommendation for fluid intake is 3 liters daily. Ensure you remain hydrated with these tips:
- Prevent thirst before it begins. The body triggers thirst at 1-2% fluid loss. This marginally low percentage of fluid loss compromises some bodily functions.
- Consume a glass of water before each first meal. Studies show people who consume water prior to each meal eat fewer calories at meal times; contributing to weight loss.
- Consume at least 5 cups of vegetables/fruits daily. 5 servings will not only aid hydration, it will provide you with potassium, a key nutrient (electrolyte) that regulates body fluid.
- Diversify your consumption. Herbal teas, coffee, milk, and unsweetened juices all contain water. Beware of caffeine. It is a diuretic and will deplete some of your water intake. Sports drinks, although rich in electrolytes, are also exceptionally high in sugar. Sports drinks are not necessary to replenish bodily fluids unless you are exercising for an excessive length of time. Flavored waters should also be scrutinized. Read labels carefully. You want to avoid brands that contain artificial flavors, colors, sugars, and salts.
- Water does not have to be boring. Consider adding lemon, lime, cucumber or orange to your water. Not only does citrus fruit add great taste, it is also a natural fat burner. Peppermint leaves add a nice minty flavor to cold water and as a bonus, it freshens breath.
Next month we will learn about hidden calories in your beverages.
Exercise of the Month
Primary Muscle Targeted: Back, Glutes and Hamstrings
Secondary Muscles: Abdominals, Chest and Shoulders
- Lie face down on the floor with your legs straight and your arms stretched out to the sides.
- Raise your upper body, arms and legs together about 18 inches off the floor as if you were flying.
- Hold this position briefly, then lower yourself back to the floor, and repeat.
Candice McField is an ACE Certified Health Coach, WNBF Pro Figure competitor, and avid global traveler. She serves a client base of on-the-go professionals; providing personalized tools to train anytime, anywhere. Questions or comments? Send them directly to me at email@example.com. I would love to hear from you. Arise!®