Water is the magical component for many things and has a varied range of health benefits. The human body itself is made up of approximately 60% water, so keeping well hydrated is essential. Apart from being an essential nutrient for the maintenance of life, water can also have positive benefits in other areas of our health, such as:
– Increasing physical performance
– Increasing brain function
– Reducing fatigue
– Preventing and treating headaches
– Assisting with weightloss
– Improving digestive system function
– Clearing and moisturising skin
There is no ‘rule of thumb’ for how much water you need to consume, but the most recent research has found that if you drink approximately 13 cups of water a day for male, and 9 cups a day for females, it should be enough to keep you well hydrated. The best way to measure is to sip water until your thirst is satisfied. If you feel thirsty, it may be a sign of dehydration.
It is important to remember that water can be ingested through many different sources, not just by drinking it. Approximately 20% of the body’s overall water requirement can come from the foods you eat throughout the day. You may also source some of your water from other fluids such as milk, coffee, tea, soup, juice and other liquids. Although there are many sources where the body can extract water, we always recommend a nice cool glass of fresh water. Remember, if you are out in the sun, live in a hot climate or completing activities that cause a high amount of perspiration, you will need to increase your water intake to ensure you stay hydrated and continue performing at your best.
Alixe Luckins (B.Sc. Exercise Physiology)
Accredited Exercise Physiologist (AEP)(ESSAM)