Why is Water So Important
Water is an essential nutrient and is to our body what oil is to a car; we can’t function without it. Our bodies are 50 to 70 percent water, and much of that water has to be replaced every day. Don’t wait until you are thirsty to replace fluids. A dry mouth and sudden thirst indicates that the body already needs water.
As a general rule, children need around an ounce of fluid per pound of body weight per day. For example, a 40-pound child needs around 40 ounces of fluid. Adults need about a half an ounce of fluid per pound of body weight per day. An easy way to remember this is to drink half of your body weight in ounces per day.
Here are a few more reasons water is so important.
Water Prevents Constipation
Not drinking enough fluids is the most common cause of constipation—small, hard, infrequent, and uncomfortable bowel movements. Normally, high-fiber foods in the intestines absorb and hold on to water. This keeps the stools soft, large, and easy to pass. When we do not drink enough water, the body steals water away from the stools.
Cleans the body
The kidneys also need water to eliminate toxins and waste products from the body. Drinking lots of fluids helps the kidneys do their job.
Keeps muscles moving
Our muscles are 70 to 75 percent water. When you get dehydrated, your muscles don’t work as well. They get tired. You can’t run as fast or jump as high. Your muscles tighten up.
Good for the brain
Like muscles, the brain is 70 to 75 percent water. When the brain doesn’t get enough water, it can’t think or send messages to the body as effectively.
Good “cough syrup”
Drinking water is especially important when you have a cold or fever. Drinking lots of fluids keeps the breathing passages from drying out and getting plugged with mucus. Water will help cure a dry cough and loosen the secretions in the lungs that cause a deep chest cough. Drinking lots of fluids also makes up for the water lost through sweat—one of the body’s strategies for keeping cool and fighting fevers.
If you tend to eat too much, drink a glass of room temperature water before every meal to curb the appetite a bit.
Water and proper hydration is critical to your daily health, so do what you can to ensure you’re drinking enough! Is plain, old water not tempting your taste buds? Try infusing your water with fruit for a delicious and refreshing twist!
The L.E.A.N. Blog
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