Week 2: Drink Water

The water topic is a running joke in our house. They hammered it into my husband’s head so hard in ARMY Ranger school that my husband now seems to think it can fix any ailment. Headache? Drink water. Feeling sick? Drink water. Broken leg? Drink water.

While I am not quite as obsessed with water consumption as he is, someone once told me that drinking water is the key to any diet. Note previous post, I hate the word “diet”, but if you are trying to lose weight, in my experience absolutely true! And it makes sense.

Up to 60% of the human body is water, the brain is composed of 70% water, and the lungs are nearly 90% water. Lean muscle tissue contains about 75% water by weight, as is the brain; body fat contains 10% water and bone has 22% water. (Read, fat has less water, lean has more water)  The same article even states that “People with more fatty tissue have have less water than people with less fatty tissue (as a percentage).” So there you have it.

 “About 83% of our blood is water, which helps digest our food, transport waste, and control body temperature.” Taking the “fat” side out of the equation and going back to the health side. The more efficient your body is, naturally you’ll be healthier, so again, drinking water makes sense. (Source: http://ga.water.usgs.gov/edu/propertyyou.html)

So how much water is enough? You usually read eight 8 oz glasses per day, simply because the numbers are easy to remember. According to the Mayo Clinic, “The Institute of Medicine determined that an adequate intake (AI) for men is roughly 3 liters (about 13 cups) of total beverages a day. The AI for women is 2.2 liters (about 9 cups) of total beverages a day. ”  That’s a lot of water! I have also read that for every caffeinated beverage, you should add another 8 ounce glass since caffeine dehydrates. Of course other factors also influence like workouts, hot weather, etc… so it only goes up from there. So really, consider the above guidelines a MINIMUM. For some of us, that’s a lot of water! And I’d argue to get that amount of water in without moving your desk to the bathroom stall, there’s not room for many other liquids (coffee, soda, etc…)

So how do you get this quantity of water in? My advice is get a water bottle that you really like. Something that doesn’t leak if in a bag, has a straw so you can drink and drive, and fits into the cup holder of your car. For me, this is always key to getting enough water intake. It maybe tough at first, but again, measure it. Keep it included in your journal. You’ve got to start somewhere so don’t beat yourself up if you don’t get there in the first week. Note how you feel. If you do need that cup of coffee in the morning, have it! Just be sure you add more water to your quota.

I notice that it’s one of those things, the more water I drink, the more water I want to drink. The more coffee, soda, etc… I drink the moreI want to drink. In contrast, now that I typically intake this much water and drink almost no soda and only the occasional half cup of coffee, when I do drink any of these I start to get a weird headache. Try it for yourself and see…

You’re challenge this week? Drink water. Happy drinking! (And, of course peeing…)

 

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