THE IMPORTANCE OF WATER

Our bodies consist of 75% water, so water is an essential nutrient.

We lose about 1,5 litres of water a day through skin, lungs, gut and urine. This is essential, as it ensures that waste products are eliminated from the body. Every chemical and metabolic reaction that takes place in the body requires water to be present.

Water has a direct job in maintaining the body's temperature through perspiration and evaporation. If you do not drink enough water you will become dehydrated, and experience symptoms such as dry skin, extreme tiredness, muscle cramps and headaches. In order not to dehydrate our bodies, we have to drink 6-8 glasses of water a day. It is very important to note that tea, coffee, alcohol, soft drinks and cordials are dehydrators. They draw water out of your body in order to dilute the concentration of sugar. Flavoured mineral water should be checked as it could contain sugar.

We often mistake thirst for hunger, and eat something instead of having a glass of water. In very hot weather or during exercise, your thirst may not keep pace with your actual water requirement.

Water helps improve digestion and constipation, and prevents urinary tract infections. It improves the overall appearance of your skin. Drinking water decreases your appetite, and helps get rid of fat - the reaction that mobilises fat to be used for energy requires water.

HOW DO I INCREASE MY WATER INTAKE?

  • Make it accessible
    Keep a jug of water and a glass on your desk or in a place you pass often.
  • Make your water "look good"
    Put slices of orange, lemon, quartered apples, mint, rosemary, lemon grass etc into the jug it looks good enough to drink, and has a subtle flavour.
  • Instead of tea or coffee
    Try hot water with a slice of lemon and fresh ginger - delicious for a change, and good for the circulation!
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