In my current role as a Tele-Health Nurse, I am realizing that people as a whole are water deprived. Our bodies are made up of about 60% water and we are continuously losing that water through urination, sweating, breathing and in our stool. It must be continuously replaced. Water is an essential part of our diet. As a matter of fact, it is vital to life.
I could write a book on the benefits of water and how it works to keep our bodies functioning properly. I will try to hit the highlights and hope you will understand the critical nature of water intake.
I talk to hundreds of patients a week who call in with varying symptoms. One of my initial questions is, “How much water do you drink a day?” I am shocked at the responses. “At least 2 bottles a day.” “Very little.” “I am not sure but not much.”
Dehydration or lack of proper amount of water leads to:
- Increased blood sugar (Diabetes)
- Increased anxiety
- Dry/Wrinkled Skin
- Decreased circulation
- Decreased Heart Function
- Altered Mood
- Decreased Concentration, memory and alertness
There are more negative implications of not drinking enough water daily. These are just a few.
Function of Water:
- Aids in Digestion
- Aids in Absorption
- Critical for proper Circulation
- Regulation of body temperature
- Transportation of nutrients to our cells and organs
- Vital to Optimal Heart function
I will give a few examples.
The skin contains plenty of water which as mentioned earlier must be replaced continuously. Lack of water leaves your skin looking dry and wrinkled. Proper water intake is also vital for heart function. Blood volume (water volume), blood pressure and heart rate are all closely related and very dependent on proper hydration with water. http://www.ncbib.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2908954
If you have a diagnosis of heart failure or kidney failure, check with your doctor regarding the proper amount of water consumption for you. Otherwise, get to drinking.
How to tell if you are drinking enough
Your urine is the best indicator to tell if you are drinking enough water. Your urine should be clear and free of odor. If it is dark yellow or even moderately yellow, you should be drinking more. I like to think of water as a cleansing agent that flushes the body of toxins and keeps it running smoothly. Keep in mind that certain vitamin supplements can turn your urine a different color but otherwise, it should be clear.
Ditch the incredibly harmful drinks like sodas, sweet tea and fruit juices full of sugar and down a nice glass of water instead. Your body will thank you. It will thank you even more if you drink it at room temperature. Ice cold water can be a bit of a shock to the body and create changes in our vessels. If you hate water, flavor it with fresh squeezed lemon, oranges, strawberries, cucumbers, mint or what ever flavor you prefer.
Keep a bottle of water in your car, in your bag, at your desk and on your night-stand. Start your day off with a glass of water to rehydrate all your cells.
For the next month, I challenge you to focus on drinking a minimum of 8 glasses a day. You will see an improvement in your energy, mood, skin clarity, and overall sense of well-being to just name a few.
Thanks as always for tuning in. I appreciate each of you.
Vince Shifflett, RN BSN CCRN
Hi, I’m Vince. I am a Critical Care Registered Nurse and Author. Welcome to my site. On this site you will be provided inspirational, educational, motivational and thought provoking articles. It is my mission to have this information help you achieve Optimal Health which includes your Physical Health, Spiritual Health, and Mental Health. My ultimate goal is to create change and stimulate self-healing. I would love to have your support by entering your email address on this site to receive my monthly articles. I look forward to your feedback.