My #1 Health Tip

My #1 tip - if I could only give you one, out of all the many, many I would like to share!

My #1 tip is:  STAY HYDRATED!!

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It is so obvious to see that a plant without water dies.

What we don't often see is that a person without water will die too.  But that is exactly the direction we are headed when we do not stay hydrated.  Scientists tell us we can live about 5 or so weeks without food, but without water, our bodies can only survive about five days.

And though, as we daily become dehydrated, we may not physically die, our bodies will start to demonstrate the effects of death the more dehydrated we become; for water is one of the most life giving substances God has given us.  It makes up over two-thirds of our bodies, and consequently has a powerful influence over every function that happens in sustaining our lives.  

Why is water so important?

We need water to maintain bodily functions in the cells, tissues and organs of our bodies.   For example, water is used to:

                *remove waste from our bodies, through our digestive system

                *regulate our body temperature through sweat

                *help joints to move freely without friction

                *deliver oxygen and nutrients throughout our bodies

                *keep our eyes, nose, mouth, skin, and lungs moist


Everyday our bodies lose water through sweat, breath, urine, tears, nasal discharge, and feces.  Consequently we must continuously be replenishing the amount of water for our bodies to function properly.

How much water a person needs to drink varies by numerous factors, such as how much physical activity one does, what climate they live in, whether they are ill or not, even whether they are male or female.  A good rule of thumb is to take half of your body weight and that number is the amount of ounces you should drink per day.

The best rule though is to constantly monitor your own individual body.

Here are 5 Ways To Tell If You Are Dehydrated

1.  (I love this tip!)  Pinch the skin on the back of your hand, and then release it.  If the skin remains elevated, you are dehydrated.  The skin should drop back to normal very quickly.

2.  The color of your urine is another indicator of your hydration levels.  The more clear the urine color, the better.  If your urine is dark yellow to brown, you are dehydrated and need to consume more water.    

3.  Dry skin is another way to determine if you are dehydrated.  Since our bodies are such a high percentage of water, when we are dehydrated, the body will pull water away from skin cells to use for other functions in the body.  This will cause dry skin and chapped lips (and cause you to look more aged as well!).

4.  Fatigue, Headaches, Lightheadedness, and even  Palpitations (feeling that your heart is jumping around)  are also symptoms that you are dehydrated (although those might be indicators of other factors as well).  The first thing I ask myself or others when experiencing any of these symptoms is "Have you been drinking any water lately?"

5.  Constipation can also be a sign that you are dehydrated (though there could also be other reasons for constipation).  When food passes through the colon, it needs fluids to help facilitate the flow of food throughout the intestines.  If we are dehydrated, the stools become hard and difficult to pass.

5 Ways To Include More Water In Your Day

1.  Start your day off first thing with a glass of water.  I put a glass in the refrigerator at night before I go to bed.  When I wake up and head to the kitchen, that is the first thing I grab.  Since it is chilled, it is refreshing after not having anything to drink all night (though I try to let it warm a bit as really cold liquids can be harsh on the digestive system).

2.  Make water more enjoyable by adding a colored straw, adding lemon or other fruit or maybe even a touch of natural sweetener.  I keep a pretty pitcher in the refrigerator filled with filtered water and enjoy reaching for that pitcher and filling up my glass.  You can search online for recipes for infused water to get more inspired.

3.  Keep track of how much you are drinking throughout the day.  There are even apps available to track this if you are either, a)  the competitive type or b) need more accountability.

4.  Develop habits around your water intake.  Try drinking a glass 1/2 hour before each meal, or making a habit of carrying a water bottle with you wherever you go.

5.  And don't forget that many foods are water rich as well.  Eating fruits and vegetables like watermelon, grapes, oranges, lettuce and tomatoes will help you stay hydrated too.

Don't Be Shriveled!  Do Your Body a Favor &

Drink Up, Feel Refreshed, Vibrant & Well!

© margaret young