It’s November and football season is in Full Swing. WoooHooo go Bobcats! We all love a good cheer right?! I mean, who doesn’t love rooting for the home team, wearing the jersey with pride, waving your pom-poms in the air like you just don’t care! Well let’s all stand up and cheer for the real start of the team, the water cooler!
I know what you’re thinking. “She’s gonna tell us to drink more water. Everyone already knows that. Why do we nee a whole blog post about water Dr. Hathaway?” And then you are going to tell me with that snarly voice inside your head, “I drink lots of water!” Well, let me just tell you… no one drinks enough water. Like no-one. Ok maybe someone, but generally speaking, every single one of us could be doing a better job with our water intake, myself included.
Your body is 75% water and all of your organ systems depend on you being well hydrated to function at their highest level. Your brain needs water to process and make higher order decisions. Your gut depends on an adequate intake of water to keep things moving the right direction. Staying well hydrated promotes healthy weight loss and energy. Water provides cushion to your joints and keeps your muscles loose and able to regenerate. And of course, your kidneys rely on a healthy supply of water to flush toxins out of your system as urine.
Here are a few parameters I’ll throw out there for you. Are you peeing every hour on the hour? Is your pee clear? Did you drink at least 75 ounces of water today? No?? See, I told you. You should be drinking more water! A good rule of thumb is to divide you body weight in half and drink that in ounces of water per day. So if you weight 150 pounds that means you need to drink 75 ounces of water!
No Derrick, coffee does not count as water. I don’t care that you poured 12 cups of H2O into the Kehrig before you started brewing that delicious brown nectar from the gods. It doesn’t count. In fact all that wonderful caffeine is actually dehydrating you even more.
Caffeine acts as a mild diuretic by inhibiting the reabsorption if sodium in the loop of Henle within the kidney, and increasing the glomerular filtration rate. It also moderately suppressed Anti-diuretic hormone which in turn causes less water to come back into the body tissues and more of it to be excreted as urine. (Boom Science! Yes I did bring up the loop of Henle!)
So, coffee, tea and soda don’t count. Alcohol also doesn’t count… that should go without saying. So what does count as water? Well, I’m gonna make it easy here. Water. Like, a fish can swim in it, water. Yep, that’s right. You have to actually drink good ol fashion water to hydrate yourself.
Now what about the new found trend of sparking water?? I love me some La Croix, with its hint of flavor and effervescent bubbles. It’s a great alternative to soda and doesn’t have the caffeine to dehydrate you like iced coffee. Some “sparking water” can have sodium in it, artificial flavors, sugar, and other additives. So those would not count and would not hydrate you very well. But truly pure sparkling water with no additives, other than the carbon dioxide to make it bubble, is probably fine. It is worth noting, that those bubbles can cause bloating and sense of fullness and may prevent you from being able to drink your full 75 ounces. A good rule of thumb is that no more than 12 ounces of your daily H20 should come from sparking water, most of it should be flat or “still” water.
If I drink all that water, won’t I have to pee all the time?? Yes Janet, that’s kind of the whole point. Think of how many times a day you change a baby’s diaper. You’d be worried if it was only once? Yet many of us go through our work day with little more than one bathroom break. And checking your hair at lunch doesn’t count. Drink the water, use the extra bathroom breaks to stretch your legs, escape the desk for a few minutes and catch up on your blog reading 😜
So, 3 cheers for water!!! Hip Hip Hooray, Hip Hip Hooray!!! You know its good for you. You know you should be drinking it. So head on down to the local Target, find a cute 32 ounce water bottle, fill that puppy up 3 times a day and you’re there! You can do it. I believe in you. Now excuse me, I’ve got to go pee.
The Views expressed in this blog are soley that of its author and are not meant to serve as medical advice. Instead, go see your family doctor. They are super cool and love to help people.