You probably already know you should be aiming for a minimum of eight glasses of water a day, more if it’s hot, or if you’re very active. You may also be aware that a low water intake will lead to signs of dehydration such as:
- Increased thirst
- Dry mouth
- Sticky saliva
- Reduced urine output with dark yellow urine
- Lack of energy
- Confusion and inability to concentrate
The trouble is, by the time you experience any one of these (yes, even the simple one of thirst) you’re already dehydrated.
It can be hard to drink enough water, especially when sodas, coffee and energy drinks are calling us. However, to stay healthy and feel great, we should strive to drink those eight glasses of water each day. It helps if you have a few strategies to help you remember to drink more water, and to make it a little more appetizing.
Ten Simple Ways to Drink More Water
Get into a routine of drinking it at set times. This can have a range of added benefits. A glass of water on waking helps flush out internal organs. If you like to have a hot beverage as soon as you wake up try hot water with lemon. Many people find a glass of water 20 -30 minutes before eating aids digestion, so try drinking one as soon as you start cooking or order one as soon as you arrive at a restaurant. A glass of water before bed may help guard against strokes and drinking water before getting in hot bath helps keep blood pressure down.
Drink a glass of water every time you urinate. Keep a glass in your bathroom and make drinking water part of your routine, just as you wash your hands. You don’t have to be Einstein to work out how this becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy in your quest to drink more water.
Throw some lemon in your water. It gives it some taste, has numerous health benefits and may help prevent cancer.
Put yourself off drinking unhealthy sodas by reminding yourself what’s in them. Nutritionists are increasingly regarding artificial sweeteners such as aspartame as the work of the devil. Large quantities of sugar aren’t much better.
While you can’t beat lots of good, plain water for rehydration purposes, it is OK to get some of your water intake from other healthy sources like freshly made juices, smoothies and herbal tea.
Eat lots of water rich fruits and veggies too. A few slices of cold watermelon on a hot day may be the most refreshing snack you can have, and it’s full of nutrients and water.
Keep a log of your water intake. This can be as simple as a sticky note on the fridge, or a page in your day planner. Just make a little checkmark every time you drink a glass of water. This helps you keep track of how much you’ve drunk, and you’ll be surprised how motivating it is to try and get those eight little checkmarks on there every day.
Drink some water when you feel hungry. Unfortunately many of us are so out of tune with our bodies that we think we’re hungry when we’re actually thirsty. Try reaching for a glass of water before you reach for a snack.
Carry a water bottle. It’s much easier to drink water when it’s readily available. Carry a bottle of water around with you in the car, at work, while running errands, in the yard, and even while you are working around the house. You’ll be sipping away the water without even noticing it.
Try using any and all of these ideas if you’re struggling to get your recommended eight glasses of water a day. Your body will thank you for it in the long run.
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