Need to drink more water but have a tough time getting it in? This may help.
Other than air itself, water is the most important life-giving substance on the planet. It’s needed for nearly every metabolic function in the body; our brains are mainly water and fat; water carries oxygen throughout our body; it helps with proper detoxification, elimination and beautiful skin. And yet, most Americans go days without enough water. I want to help you fall in love with water— or at least what it will do for you!
How much do I need?
Depending on your climate/activity level/diet/etc., you need between 50-100% of your weight in ounces. So, for example, if you weigh 200 pounds, you’d need between 100-200 ounces of water. I know that’s a big range but there are many variables to consider. You will need more water (closer to 100% of your weight in ounces) if you:
- Are pregnant or nursing
- Do heavy exercise
- Work in the heat (sweating)
- Eat a lot of processed foods that contain poor quality salt (chips, cheese, donuts, crackers, etc.)
- Live in a dry/desert climate
- Drink sugary or caffeinated drinks (soda, alcohol, coffee, etc.)
You can get away with a bit less water (closer to half your weight in ounces) if you:
- Rarely sweat
- Live in a humid climate
- Eat a lot of fresh raw food
- Avoid processed foods
What kind of water is best?
There is much controversy about water… Here’s the bottom line: The FIRST priority for your drinking water is to make sure it’s pure/clean. This may sound like a no-brainer but, the truth is, if your drinking water is city or municipal water, it’s most likely not safe. Most municipal water contains high amounts of chlorine, fluoride and many other chemicals that are on the GRAS list. (GRAS stands for “generally recognized as safe.” This is a list of chemicals that the government deems safe in “small” quantities.) I want you to think about this for a moment… Are you okay with just a tiny bit of any neurotoxin in your water?
That leaves us with Reverse Osmosis (RO) or distilled as the safest options. Many people argue that this is “dead water” because there are no minerals in it. While it’s true there are no minerals in it, that’s not a problem if you’re eating a balanced plant-based diet; you will be getting plenty of minerals. However, if you’re still concerned, you can add a pinch of Pink Salt or a few drops of Polar Mins to each glass of water that you drink.
Common side effects of being well hydrated (besides having to pee every 90 minutes):
- Increased energy
- Glowing skin
- Better elimination (bowel movements)
- Stronger kidneys
- Less body odor (breath, underarms, feet, etc.)
- Reduced blood pressure
- Fewer headaches
(Personally, I like to error on the side of extra-hydrated so I drink my weight in ounces nearly every day. I’m a heavy drinker for sure!)
Here are some easy ways to get more water:
- Start your day with a lot of it!
As soon as you wake up, drink 24-32 ounces of water right away. This will ensure that you start your day hydrated. It will help flush out toxins that your body worked hard to release in the night, and it will also give you a success/win the minute you get out of bed!
**For an added bonus, you can add some fresh lemon juice or a tablespoon of organic apple cider vinegar
- Drink a smoothie!
As one meal per day (preferably breakfast), drink a large green smoothie. Not only will this give you around 16 ounces of water (depending on how much you add) but the fruit and greens that you add are usually made of over 90% of water as well. There are TONS of great reasons to drink green smoothies, but for now let’s suffice it to say that it’s a super nutrient-dense way to stay hydrated.
- Make citrus water!
Adding a small amount of fresh, organic lemon/lime/grapefruit or orange juice to your water is a great and refreshing way to stay hydrated. A small amount of stevia is also a great way to sweeten it with out spiking your blood sugar or adding a lot of calories.
- Drink tea!
Herbal teas such as hibiscus or peppermint can also add a bit of light refreshing flavor with out calories or sugar.
- Eat your water!
Eat more raw fruits and vegetables and fewer dried or processed foods and beverages. (Remember that coffee, soda and alcohol are dehydrating.)
Warning– Be aware that some liquids are actually ANTI-hydrating (a.k.a. “dehydrating”). That means that they are actually depleting the bodies tissues and organs of the much needed life-giving water. The worst among this group would include coffee, alcohol and soda. It is best to avoid these altogether, but if you do consume them, you will need an ADDITIONAL 16 ounces of water for every 8 ounces of these dangerous drinks. (Just in case that’s not clear, here’s an example: Let’s say you’re a 200 pound man. Already you need AT LEAST 100 ounces of water per day. What happens when you decide to have two 12-ounce beers with dinner? Now you’d need an ADDITIONAL 48 ounces. of water that day!)
No matter where you’re at on the water-drinking spectrum, I challenge you to put it to the test: For 10 days, drink at least half your weight in ounces and let me know how you feel and what you notice.