Everyone tells you to do it…your mom, your coach, your doctor, your overzealous friend. And yet, it can seem harder to follow through with than one would think. That’s right, we’re talking about drinking more water! Staying hydrated is absolutely vital to good health no matter your age, health status or physical activity level.
Getting enough water every day is important for your health. Healthy people meet their fluid needs by drinking when thirsty and drinking with meals. Most of your fluid needs are met through the water and beverages you drink. However, you can get some fluids through the foods you eat. For example, broth soups and foods with high water content, such as celery, tomatoes or melons, can contribute to fluid intake.
WATER HELPS YOUR BODY:
- Keep your temperature normal
- Lubricate and cushion joints
- Protect your spinal cord and other sensitive tissues
- Get rid of wastes through urination, perspiration and bowel movements
- Maintain and improve skin quality
YOUR BODY NEEDS MORE WATER WHEN YOU’RE:
- In hot climates
- Physically active
- Running a fever
- Consuming alcohol
- Having diarrhea or vomiting
TIPS FOR STAYING HYDRATED
- Carry a water bottle for easy access during classes, activities and workouts. There are many water filling stations on campus!
- Choose water instead of sugar-sweetened beverages. This can help with weight management as well as hydration. Substituting water for one 20 ounce sugar-sweetened soda will save you about 240 calories.
- Choose water when eating out. You will save money, reduce calories and stay hydrated.
- Add a wedge of lime, lemon or your favorite fruit to your water. This can help improve the taste and help you drink more water than you usually do.
- Premeasure the amount of water your body needs each day in a jug, and challenge yourself to get through the entire jug!
- Download a water-tracking app. There are many options available on iTunes and Google Play.
Adequate daily intake of water for men is roughly 13 cups of water-based beverages a day. Adequate daily intake of water for women is about 9 cups of water-based beverages a day. This amount should be adjusted if you live in a temperate climate or if you perform high levels of physical activity.