Water and Hydration - Also known as the Quick Fix!Jul 12, 2021
We all hear the same phrase time and time again — Stay hydrated...it is important!!
But I am here to tell you (as my clients all know...I am the hydration police). There is a reason that I bring up water intake during every single one of my client check-ins.
The answer — because it is a magic potion and it is a QUICK FIX for anything and everything that ails you!
So WHY do I care so much?
Proper hydration is critical for living a healthy life, as it impacts just about every aspect of your body, including your brain, physical health, and performance both in the gym and in everyday life!
What Does Proper Fluid Balance Look Like?
- When it comes to your physical health, proper fluid balance is necessary for your organs to function properly.
- Your kidneys need adequate fluid to filter toxins from your body.
- Proper hydration means adequate blood volume, contributing to blood pressure and heart rate.
- Proper blood volume means nutrients are able to be pumped to different areas of your body more efficiently.
- Adequate fluid intake is critical for proper digestion and movement of waste through the gastrointestinal tract.
Now, how about that big organ we like to call YOUR BRAIN…Dehydration can cause serious detriment to your mental health as well.
Dehydration on the Brain
Studies show that you only need to be 1% dehydrated to experience a 5% decrease in cognitive function. A 2% decrease in brain hydration can result in short-term memory loss and have trouble with math computations. Prolonged dehydration causes brain cells to shrink in size and mass.
The brain itself is made up of approximately 85% water. Water gives the brain energy to function, including thought and memory processes. Water is also needed for the production of hormones and neurotransmitters in the brain. Since the brain cannot store water and you are constantly losing water through perspiration and other body functions, it’s essential that you continuously hydrate.
Studies show that dehydration can cause changes in:
- Short term memory
- Visual tracking
- Sleep quality
What about the benefits of being properly hydrated?
Surprise! Hydration plays a critical role in your athletic performance as well!
Proper fluid balance has been linked to:
- Improved endurance
- More motivation
- Less fatigue
- Decreased perceived effort
You’ll be able to think faster, focus more clearly and experience greater clarity when your brain functions on a full reserve of water.
Ways to Increase Your Water Intake
A few “simple” things you can do to ensure that you are getting the proper amount of water and fluids into your body every day.
- Drink a glass of water BEFORE you start your workout and continually sip on it during — I always try to sip between sets! Got a second to breath...got a second to sip
- Drink a glass of water before each meal — this will also help you determine how hungry you are...plus, you’re getting your water intake before instead of feeling full after your meal and putting off drinking your water.
- Avoid alcohol while flying and drink water instead — we all know how cute those bottles of wine look; try swapping it out for water and not only hit your daily intake BUT ALSO notice how good you feel when you land. No more dry mouth or sore throat!
- Trade your soda for some sparkling water — love the bubble sensation? This is an easy switch. TIP! Try adding some fruit to your sparkling water to make it even fancier; you’ll be wondering why you didn’t make the switch sooner!
- Eat your water — we all know that there are some fruits and vegetables out there that pack a punch when it comes to the amount of water they have in them...snack on some watermelon and cucumber to increase your intake!
Ready for a Change
So you want to perform better in the gym? Get that promotion at work? Stop forgetting to pick up your kids from daycare? Try adding water! It’s the ultimate quick fix, and TRUST me...your body and brain will thank you later!