We all know that water is necessary for naturally glowing skin (fact: your skin contains 64 percent water). But the benefits of water don’t stop at helping you achieve a smooth and supple complexion. Water, turns out, can be a bit of a miracle remedy for some of your most basic aches and pains. It can even help you achieve your dream body. Here are five amazing things you didn’t know water could do you.
1. It helps you lose weight faster.
When your muscles are properly hydrated, you can walk, run, strength-train and (your favorite workout here) longer and harder, giving you a more effective workout. In addition, water can increase your metabolic rate (the rate at which you burn calories) even while at rest. That’s enough to make me drink more water! But there’s more…
2. It makes you happier.
Studies have attested to this, but I, personally, have seen this happen with children. I was out with a family who fed their children lunch (no water) and then ice cream (no water). Guess what happened next: crankiness and meltdown. The children actually knew enough to ask for water at that point, drank a small glass and were flashing their pearly whites and laughing within seconds. So if you find yourself moody, depressed, foggy or grouchy, a big glass of water may be all you need.
3. It relieves headaches.
Ever wondered why your head feels like it’s exploding the morning after pulling an all-nighter with the girls? Yup, that’s dehydration in the flesh. And it’s not just alcohol that can cause those hangover-like episodes. If you chug other types of diuretics like coffee, soda or tea like there’s no tomorrow, your body may excrete more water than it should. The solution? Cut back on your diuretics intake and replace them with water. Many of my clients who were struggling with severe headaches and migraines experienced relief almost immediately after their diet-soda habit ended.
4. It alleviates muscle cramping.
Have you experienced muscle cramping after an intense workout? Lack of electrolytes like potassium or magnesium might be the cause, but it could also be dehydration. Try upping your water intake and see how your body feels afterward. You can also try adding electrolyte powder to your water or drinking natural coconut water, which is high in electrolytes as well.
5. It stumps sugar cravings.
This could be another secret to weight loss. When our bodies are dehydrated we tend to crave sweets even more. Whenever you feel an intense sugar-craving coming on, drink a big glass of water first and wait five minutes. If it subsides, you may have just been dehydrated.
So, how much water should you be drinking?
I don’t like recommending the common “drink eight glasses a day” because everyone has a different idea of how big a glass is. Also, doesn’t it make sense that each and every body has a different need when it comes to hydration? It depends on someone’s weight, muscle mass and activity level. Therefore I recommend a simple equation to use as a guide. Drink half of your body weight in ounces daily. If you weigh 150 pounds, you should aim to drink about 75 ounces of water per day. If you are very fit and active (as well as on hot days) I would recommend even more.
P.S.: Please use a BPA-free water bottle to refill throughout the day. We need to stop wasting so many plastic bottles that also leach chemicals into our water. Good for the environment and good for your wallet too!
Not a big fan of plain water?
If you don’t feel like drinking all that water, try flavoring your water with the combos below.
READERS–Are you drinking enough water? What do you do to keep your body hydrated all throughout the day? Tell us in the comments section below.