The Easiest Way to Boost Your Well-Being This Summer

Drink water. That's it, my friends: Water is basically the most important thing for our health. Here's why it's even better than you thought.

Water is essential for keeping everything moving in our bodies, maintaining our energy levels and curbing cravings. Yet, we rarely think of the key role it plays in our daily wellness. Here’s why drinking more water can be the best way to boost your well-being.

The Goods

Water is a combination of hydro­gen and oxygen, which come together to make a liquid that is critical to our survival. Water makes up most of our body mass. Adult men are about 65 percent water, while women are slightly less. Keeping those levels topped up with a good, clean source is vital for our health, well-being and metabolic functions and nec­essary for our survival.

There are also healthy foods we can consume that are high in water content, such as smoothies, soups and fruits and veggies, including celery, cucum­ber, watermelon and citrus. What we aim for when consuming water is to avoid cutting any corners on the hydration front. It’s great to include water-dense foods like the ones mentioned above, along with six to eight cups of water each day.

The Boost

Water plays a myriad of roles in the body beyond simple hydration. It helps carry nutrients, proteins and hormones all over the body, transfers messages throughout the nervous system and works to flush our organs, including the liver, kidneys, bladder and bowels. This liquid of life helps moistur­ize our skin and lubricate our joints. Speaking of lubrication, ladies, water is vital for keeping us lubricated elsewhere, too.

One little-known fact about water is that it can help curb hunger and increase energy — or rather help us better tune in to true hunger and fatigue cues. Both feelings of hunger and lethargy can actually be signs of dehydra­tion. Headaches? Yes, those, too, can also be signs of dehydration.

The Plan

The best water to drink is the kind that comes free out of your faucet. If you are concerned about what’s in the water where you live or use well water, you can check with your local municipality or run your own home test to deter­mine what type of filter, if any, is needed.

Make water the first thing you put into your body every day — I suggest starting with anywhere from 500 millilitres to one full litre. Keep that fresh, clear liquid flowing in moderate amounts throughout the day. If you’re sit­ting at a desk, fill up a pitcher and sip on it continuously. If you have a water bottle, keep track of how many times you refill it.

For great flavouring ideas, see these flavoured water recipes. The key is to find a method that works for you to keep you well hydrated.

Meghan Telpner is a nutritionist and an author. Get certified as a culinary nutrition expert with Meghan at the Academy of Culinary Nutrition

Originally Published in Best Health Canada