The body cannot function without water! ALL cell and organ functions depend on water for their functioning.Dehydration slows the fat burning process.
Water is used in the body as: a cleanser, lubricant, to transport nutrients, maintains muscle tone, base for saliva, keeps the brain working properly, surrounds joints, regulates body temperature, keeps skin soft, washes waste from cells, critical agent in disease prevention, aids in regulation of bowel movements and alleviates constipation.
Adequate hydration can decrease the risk of colon cancer by 45% and the risk of bladder cancer by 50% because the waste material is not lingering in the cavity and polluting it.
We lose water from breathing, urinating and sweating. Diuretics such as coffee and alcohol will cause you to expel more water, therefore for every cup of caffeinated coffee or alcoholic beverage you drink, drink one glass of water to balance it.
Sipping water throughout the day allows it to be absorbed and used, while guzzling large amounts will just be passed through the body quickly and then excreted.
How much water is enough? If you pee 2-3 times and the colour is pretty close to being clear or totally clear, you are getting enough water.
A good measurement to know how much water you should be getting for your body size is: take your weight ÷ by 2, and the resulting number will be the number of ounces your body would require to be adequately hydrated.
Example: 200 lbs ÷ 2 = 100 oz = 3000 ml = 3 litres = 13 cups
If exercising for 30 minutes, you need to replace the water expelled through respiration so you should drink extra water before, during and after.
Can you drink too much water?
While it is possible to drink too much water, it requires a huge effort. It is a concern for people who suffer from obsessive compulsive disorder or extended athletic activity. Too much water can dilute the electrolytes (sodium and potassium) in your blood to the point where it interferes with the brain, heart and muscle functions. If untreated, it can lead to psychosis and death. Too much fluid can be treated with Gatorade or other electrolyte drinks.
Signs of dehydration.
- Dark/yellow urine (Note: Some vitamins make your urine bright yellow)
- Strong odour to urine
- Thirst - If you’re thirsty you’re too late!!
Water and Weight loss
- Burning fat requires water. Dehydration slows the fat burning process.
- Burning calories creates toxins (think exhaust from a car) and water washes them out of the body.
- Dehydration causes a reduction in blood volume which reduces oxygen distribution, resulting in a loss of energy.
- Water helps maintain muscle tone by assisting muscles in their ability to contract, and it lubricates your joints.
- While a healthy diet includes fiber, fiber cannot be processed without proper hydration and will lead to constipation.
- Water helps the liver convert fat into usable energy. With a lack of hydration the kidneys become overwhelmed with concentrated fluids, thus resulting in the liver having to work extra hard to turn fat into usable energy. If the liver has to do the kidneys’ work, then it will simply hold onto the extra fat that you would have burned off if you simply had enough water.
- Instead of excreting water and waste products, your body retains what it has to reuse. This is what causes water retention and bloating (along with sodium intake). When you don’t get enough water, your body panics and holds on to it as if in a famine. The best way to rid the body of excess water is to give it enough water to work properly.
- The body cannot store water. When you take an improper balance of sodium chloride and potassium and don’t drink enough water, your body will increase a hormone which makes the body retain fluid by keeping your kidneys from filtering it.
- Avoid salty foods if you’re retaining water and drink more water to replenish the retained water in the body