Drinking Tips for Healthy Hydration
Your Body’s Many Cries for Water
F. Batmanghelidj, MD
Start your mornings right: Morning is when you are most full of toxins and dehydrated. Reach for a big glass of water first thing in the morning – even before coffee. This water in the morning really gets the blood flowing.
-Drink a glass of water when you get up and another when you go to bed.
-Take regular water breaks.
-Avoid relying on sodas to provide your fluid need.
-Drink water before and after food; ideally drink a glass of water half an hour before you eat your meal and half an hour after your meal. You can drink water with meals, and drink water anytime your body feels like it.
*It is very important you balance your sodium intake with your water consumption. Take 1/4 teaspoon of salt per quart of water – every 4-5 glasses of water. Be sure to get sea salt. The best is Celtic sea salt or Himalayan Pink Salt, both of which are readily available at any health food store.
You should always drink water prior to eating, and after eating, to support the digestive process. The stomach depends on water to help digest food, and lack of water makes it harder for nutrients to be broken down and used as energy. The liver, which dictates where all nutrients go, also needs water to help convert stored fat into usable energy. If you are dehydrated, the kidneys turn to the liver for backup, diminishing the liver’s ability to metabolize stored fat. The resulting reduced blood volume will interfere with your body’s ability to remove toxins and supply your cells with adequate nutrients.
Keep a water bottle by your side at all times. Use either bottled water or tap water, and carry it with you everywhere, to the gym, in your car, to your office. Start by adding water to your daily regiment, during the first week, and then incorporate more as needed. The point is not to wait until you’re thirsty to drink.
Keep water flowing before, during and after a workout. Don’t forget to balance your water intake with sodium intake. Drink at least 1 liter of water for every 60 minutes of exercise. Drink more if it’s hot. During exercise, such as playing sport on a hot summer day, you can lose up to 2 liters of fluid per hour. Water and a balance salt is your best bet to keep healthy and hydrated. During exercise, it is recommended to replenish fluid at least every 20 minutes.