Drinking water is important for optimum health, energy and weight loss. Imagine not watering a plant – it wilts; or driving a car without topping up the water when it needed it. It overheats and eventually the car breaks down. This is what happens to us too as I am sure you are fully aware of so I am not going to give you a lecture on drinking more water. A short reminder is that our kidneys, brains, heart, lungs, digestive system and muscles all need water. That is kind of obvious but we seem to forget it. It is a fundamental part of my healthy life style and weight loss journey. It also is part of my change and metamorphosis physically.
We nibble instead of drink.
Sometimes we eat when we are actually thirsty; eating fruit and vegetables are a source of water as well as being important for roughage and nutrition but often we have dulled our senses to the basic need to drink water and land up substituting all types of food for water.
Originally I didn’t feel the need to drink water regularly and would nibble on all sorts of snacks. It was only when I realized what I was doing and that I was bypassing the importance of water that I began to use an app on my phone to remind me to drink water regularly. The reminder sounded like a glass of water being poured and people would look at me very confusedly when my handbag suddenly sounded off in a meeting, shop or art lesson. Everybody would laugh. In the end I didn’t find that the app suited me because I often ignored it if I was busy but it certainly underlined the fact that I needed to make more effort.
What I found to be the most helpful was to develop a mindful habit which involved a plan of linking my intention to drink water with an activity which I was already in the habit of doing. So I have a glass at the kettle and whenever I boil the water for tea or coffee I drink a glass of water as well. I also have a glass of water each time I prepare my meal. My husband prefers to drink water after going to the toilet. His motto is “Water in, water out, keep it flowing.”
Don’t like the taste of water?
Many people complain that they don’t like the taste of the water especially if they are accustomed to drinking flavoured sodas, juices or cool drinks. I flavour mine with slices of home-grown strawberries and herbs or I use slices of lemon or cucumber to change things up. After a few minutes of steeping the water it tastes delicious. When I am finished the glass of water I just top it up again with the same fruit and at the end of the day I eat the fruit. It is so enticing and a lovely way to enjoy water. Do you like water?
So there is the app, the flavoured water, or the cue for drinking which will hopefully remind one to drink more. The main thing is to find something that works for you. And remember we all slip up and even when I think I have it totally cinched I have days when I am too busy and I forget; that is when I need to go back to being more mindful about drinking enough water.
What is enough water?
Some people say 8 glasses of water a day and others are more specific about the amount of water drunk relating to your weight. It roughly works out that if you weigh 60 kg you would drink 2 litres but if you weigh 90kg you would need 3 litres. It also depends if you are active or sedentary and what climate you live in. The most important thing is to start listening to your body signals and responding to them.
Drinking water helped me nibble less as well as raising my health. It could well be part of the reason my blood pressure and glucose levels dropped. I hope that this encourages you to become more aware of your thirst and respond to it.
Take care, till next time.