Tips on Hydration
Hydration is one of the most critical aspects of our health & wellbeing. Maintaining hydration is one of the simplest things we can do to get a wide range of positive health outcomes, yet so often we stay chronically dehydrated, not realising the effects that dehydration can have on our brain & our body!
It may be difficult to drink enough water on a busy day. Be sure you have water handy at all times by keeping a bottle for water with you when you are working, travelling, or exercising. If you get bored with plain water, add a bit of lemon or lime for a touch of flavour or even a little mix up cordial. There are some brands of flavoured water available, but watch for high sugar contents.
WATER INTAKE RECOMMENDATION:
Carry a bottle: A lot of people find it useful to get a big plastic drinking bottle, fill it with water, and carry it around with them all day. I like to keep a glass of water at my desk, and I drink from it all day long. When it's empty, I fill it up again and keep drinking.
Set a reminder: Set your watch to beep at the top of each hour, or set a periodic computer reminder, so that you don't forget to drink water.
Substitute water: If you would normally get a soft drink or an alcoholic beverage, get a glass of water instead. Try sparkling water instead of alcohol at social functions.
Filter: Instead of spending a fortune on bottled water, invest in a filter for your home faucet. It'll make tap water taste like bottled at a fraction of the price.
Exercise: Exercising can help make you want to drink water more. It's not necessary to drink sports drinks like Gatorade when you exercise, unless you are doing it for more than an hour. Just drink water. If you're going to exercise, be sure to drink water a couple of hours ahead so it will get through your system in time. Drink during and after exercise as well.
Track it: It often helps when forming a new habit to keep track of it. It increases awareness and helps you ensure that you're staying on track. Keep a little log (it can be done on an index card or a notebook), which can be as simple as a tick mark for each glass of water you drink.
HOW DO I KNOW IF I'M DEHYDRATED?
The easiest way to gauge your hydration level is by simply checking the colour of your urine. Clear to light yellow indicates a healthy level of hydration. Bright to dark yellow means the body is low on fluids; the darker the pigment of the urine, the lower the fluid level in the body. Some of the symptoms you may experience are dizziness, irritability, reduced athletic ability, cramps and headaches.
If you are feeling thirsty then it’s too late – you are already dehydrated!
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