They say water is life, seek it!
To some of us, drinking water regularly is a habit we have built over the years. To others it is a daunting task that they have to set reminders for. While water is of great and practical use in our daily livelihood, it serves an even greater role in our body. Drinking water for your health and wellness needs is called hydration!
Good hydration is one of the most important aspects of a healthy diet – drinking enough liquids to keep the fluid levels in the body topped up helps to ensure that all bodily functions are able to take place as normal.
Water in the body is essential for many important processes to take place. From our blood system carrying essential glucose, oxygen and nutrients to cells, to the kidneys getting rid of waste, fluid in the body is vital to allow these to occur. It also helps our digestive system function and keeps our skin healthy.
We are uniquely designed to regulate our own body temperature, particularly in hot conditions, by losing more water through the skin (perspiration), which in turn acts to cool the body helping to maintain a stable temperature. The more water we lose through sweat, the more we need to replace, so those who live (or holiday) in a hot climate, or lose more fluid than normal doing sporting activities will need to drink more fluids more regularly to replace that lost through sweat.
Water levels in the body change as we age, with newborns having a higher body fluid level compared to adults. Elderly people have lower fluid levels still, but hydration is really important at all ages.
Adults need to drink around 1.5–2 liters of fluid a day.
A typical mug or glass is about 200 milliliters (ml) so this equates to 8-10 drinks a day.
Children need slightly less and should aim for around 6-8 drinks a day, but once they reach teenage years their requirements are similar to adults. Don’t forget that fluid needs can vary depending on various factors including level of physical activity and climate, so it is best to remember to drink regularly to keep thirst at bay.
A few groups need to take particular care to make sure their fluid levels are kept topped up and these include:
Children: Often too busy to recognize the signs of thirst!
Pregnant and breastfeeding ladies: Fluid is critical for baby and breastmilk
Older people: Often don’t drink enough
Athletes: Need regular fluid top ups as they lose more through sweat
Now share this with a friend and remember to #HydrateSustainably