Drinks on me, it’s a party!!
Time for our next nutritional habit! And no, it’s not making sure we get enough alcohol in. Although, every now and then a drink with a good friend or significant other might be just what we need.
So, what’s the next habit..
Well, it just so happens to be the single most important component to maintaining a healthy life.
Imagine yourself living a few thousand years ago, before all the modern wonders of the world. We’re roaming the land, looking for a place to settle and establish our territory. What’s the most important thing we must have close by? It’s not boos. And it’s not even protein, although that is our superhero macronutrient for maintaining that sexy primal figure.
The single most important thing in order to maintain a healthy life is.. you guessed it, WATER!
While there might be a lot of great things for your body, such as protein, fruits, veggies, exercise, etc.. Water is the number one most important thing for your health and state of well-being.
It is involved in every function of our bodies.
You can live five to seven weeks without food, but the average adult can last no more than five days without water.
Thankfully, in our great country we pretty much have access to clean water whenever we need it.
But why is it that the majority of us are still living in a mildly dehydrated state of being?
Do you suffer from joint pains and arthritis? How about high blood pressure? Digestion issues, constipation? Low energy or problems with focus? Water is directly linked to all of these.
-Water is the main lubricant in the joint spaces and helps prevent arthritis and back pain. Our bodies were fearfully and wonderfully made. We are designed to survive. When your body lacks the water it needs, it goes into a sort of rationing mode. It knows what organs our most important to our survival (brain, heart, lungs, liver, kidneys), so it protects them by stealing water from less important places such as our joints and spine causing joint and back pain!
-The immediate result of the above effect is a rise in blood pressure. Picture a garden hose. Constrict the water flow with your thumb, and it increases the water pressure inside. But drink enough water, and constricted blood vessels usually begin to open up, lowering blood pressure.
-Water prevents clogging of arteries in the heart and brain, and thus helps reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes.
-Water is the hero of the gastrointestinal tract. It is the basis of every fluid your body needs for digestion, including saliva, bile, stomach acid, pancreatic juices, and even the mucus that lines our GI tract. Without adequate water, the whole digestive system goes into emergency mode, and you may get heartburn, indigestion, constipation, hemorrhoids, and even ulcers.
-Water is directly connected to brain function. It is needed for the efficient manufacture of neurotransmitters, including serotonin. It is needed for the production of hormones made by the brain, such as melatonin AND it can prevent attention deficit disorder, and improves our attention span.
-Water helps prevent memory loss as we age, reducing the risk of degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, and Lou Gehrig’s disease.
-Water affects our appearance, making our skin smoother and giving it sparkling luster; it also reduces the effects of aging.
SO.. How much water do I need to drink?!?
Great question, I’m glad ya asked!
To get the approximate amount of water you need each day in order for your body to be able to functional at its optimal level, simply divide your weight by two; that’s how many ounces of water is recommended you consume daily.
_______ Weight in pounds ÷ 2 = ________ Ounces per day
Keep in mind that this does not account for water lost during intense bouts of exercise. So say you bring a 32 oz bottle of water to your workout and go through the whole thing! Sorry, don’t add that to your daily total. That is just replenishing the water you lost through sweat.
So, our next habit to focus on is making sure we get our recommended amount of water in daily.
Don’t sweat (no pun intended), if this seems like a bit of a stretch just start slow. I know people who literally drink no water. Switching from this to say, 80 ounces of water per day might be a little too much to swallow right off the bat. (See what I did there lol) Just starting off with a 20 ounce glass of water might be a good start.
What if I don’t like water??
Too bad. Lol, just kidding. I didn’t like water either. That is until I learned a little secret. Obviously, everyone knows the water here in San Angelo is pretty horrible. We won’t even cook with it. So, like most we bought filtered water, or got it bulk at the fill up stations that have reverse osmosis water. Well, guess what.. that water sucks too. Filtered water is simply tap water that has gone through an extensive purification process. Seems like a good thing, and it is to some extent, but when you filter out the bad stuff you take all the good stuf with it.
God gave us water, loaded with minerals and all kinds of good stuff that literally shoots up from under our feet. It comes from underground and fills natural springs, and in doing so picks up all kinds of vital ingredients for us. This is the water we were intended to drink and you can TASTE the difference. Ultra-purified water just isn’t the same, and don’t even get me started on that “minerals added for taste” bullsh*t.
I buy the gallon jugs of Crystal Geyser Natural Spring Water. It’s bottled at the source, never purified, and nothing is added; just the way Mother Nature intended.
If you try some Spring Water and still don’t like it, try infusing it with fruits, berries, cucumber, mint leaf, etc.
Does tea of coffee count as water?
Well.. that depends. You see, caffeine is a diuretic; diuretics dehydrate you. So, anything with caffeine does not count.
But if you drink decaffeinated tea or coffee then YES, count it!
One more thing before we go. Remember that whole riding an elephant thing? This is a great opportunity to practice “shaping the path!”
You know how when you’re at a bar or a little get together with some friends the drinks seem to go down so smoothly? You gotta pee constantly because your drinking so many liquids. Well, typicallly that’s because you’ve got a drink in your hand, or at least near by. When we have a glass or bottle with us we drink more. If not, we don’t think about it or don’t want to put in the effort to go get it.
So carrying around a big ol’ cup with ya everywhere ya go is a great tactic. You don’t even have to think about it; if it’s there, you’ll drink it. It’s what I do and I go through ridiculous amounts of water.
I hope you’re doing great and as always, let me know if you have any questions.
Keep on mastering these habits and you will reap the rewards.
Stay Thirsty My Friend!