Why do we need to stay hydrated?
How important is hydration? We all know we need to stay hydrated, but why is it so important? What do our bodies actually do with all that water? What could happen if you you consistently don’t drink enough water?
Keeps joints lubricated
Drinking enough water is important when it comes to ensuring your joints are in healthy shape. Well-hydrated joints are happy joints! Water is an important component of the synovial fluid that keeps joints lubricated and allows waste products to move out of the joints faster.
Delivers nutrients to cells
Water is an essential component in the body’s nutrient delivery system. Drink enough water each day to boost energy by making sure your cells are all getting what they need. This also includes muscle cells! Well-hydrated muscles can be pushed just a little bit harder!
Regulates body temperature
Being well hydrated allows your body to better regulate its core temperature. For example, when you’re exercising, your body releases sweat to cool you down. It might seem obvious but yes, your body needs water to sweat; a severely dehydrated body will not produce sweat and therefore will have a harder time cooling down on a very hot day or after physical activity.
Improves blood circulation
How important is hydration in improving blood circulation?
Over 90% of our blood is made up of water. Water helps carry all the components of blood to where they need to go. Dehydrated blood is more viscous and the heart needs to pump harder and faster to get it to where it needs to go. Water also helps carry oxygen through blood. Staying well hydrated can help ensure ideal blood oxygen levels.
Aids in digestion
Water is also necessary for ideal digestive conditions. Issues like constipation can crop up when you’re not getting enough water. Water helps to deliver nutrients from the food you’ve eaten to where they need to go. Water also helps you better digest soluble fiber.
How much water do you need?
So how much should you be drinking? Recommendations vary, but according to , the Mayo Clinic, men should consume 15.5 cups (3.7 liters) of fluids a day and women about 11.5 cups (2.7 liters) of fluids a day. If that sounds like a lot, it is! That includes all of the water you get from food, which usually makes up about 20% of your daily intake. That still leaves 12.4 cups for men and 9.2 cups for women that should come from drinking liquids. This amount should be raised for those who work out.
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