There's no arguing that water is essential for life. And it's especially important to stay hydrated when you are active. Why? Because fluid losses are accentuated when you sweat-and lack of water can lead to dehydration, a condition that occurs when you don't have enough water in your body to carry out normal functions.
But it's hard to know how much water is enough water. It's been reported that a healthy person can drink up to three gallons of water per day (gulp!). In general, however, experts recommend drinking about 8 cups of water a day.
These recommendations might seem like a lot to swallow, but there are plenty of easy tricks to keep water consumption up. Here are a few.
10 Easy Ways to Increase Water Consumption
- Carry a bottle of water with you everywhere you go. Over plastic water bottles? Invest in a reusable stainless steel water bottle.
- Craving something sweet? Add citrus or berries to a glass of water and crushed ice.
- Get classy and add a slice of lime and fresh mint to sparkling water. Sip it out of a wine glass.
- Feeling the urge to snack? Save the calories and have a glass of water instead.
- Chill out with melon chunks and cucumber slices added to cool water.
- Drink a glass of water first thing when you wake up in the morning.
- Drink a glass of water before going to bed at night.
- Replace alcohol, soda, juice and coffee with water (caffeine can act as a diuretic flushing water out of your system, which may lead to dehydration).
- Go green by adding a few sprigs of your favorite herb-such as lavender or rosemary to your water.
- Drink water before you become thirsty (signs of thirst are initial signs of slight dehydration -- even mild dehydration can drain your energy and make you tired).
Many autumn days can be warm enough to worry about dehydration, which can be serious. If you become dehydrated and can't sweat enough to cool your body, your internal temperature may rise dangerously high and result in heat stroke. Luckily you can avoid heat-related illness by drinking plenty of water during outdoor activities and on warmer days.
On a lighter note: Staying hydrated will not only keep you cool, but it looks cool, too. You can ensure your chill factor by adding ice to your water bottles.
Whether you call it agua, eau, voda, vasser or water -just drink it. Hydrate for a healthier you!