Water is incredibly important for the human body. Without this precious liquid, it will not function properly. To grasp the importance of water compared with food just consider this: a person can survive for up to a month without anything to eat, but only a few days without water.
A common problem is that many people wait to feel thirsty before they have a drink. By then, however, it is actually already too late. You only feel thirsty when there is already a fluid deficit in the body. In the long run, this is not good for health. This is why it is important to keep drinking water throughout the day even if you don't feel thirsty. The ideal goal should be to drink 2 litres a day by evening.
What happens if we don't drink enough?
At around 70%, water is the main component of the human body (the proportion decreases with age). Blood is also made up of a large amount of water and if the body has a fluid deficit, blood becomes thicker and can no longer flow very well. As a result, the entire body is poorly supplied with oxygen, which affects the ability to concentrate and general performance. In addition, a sustained lack of sufficient fluids increases the risk of developing urinary tract infections, kidney stones and constipation. Skin and mucous membranes also dry out, making it easier for bacteria and viruses to enter the body and spread.
How to drink more
To ensure that you drink enough each day, you can incorporate a few easy habits into your daily routine.
Drink a glass of water first thing in the morning when you get up. You will not only contribute to your daily goal of two litres but also replenish your body's water reserves. A lot of fluid evaporates during the night and the body needs replenishment. In addition, water (especially when it is lukewarm) stimulates digestion and wakes you up.
It is best to drink water. Tea, coffee or soda sometimes have a dehydrating effect, which is of course counterproductive. However, unsweetened herbal tea and diluted fruit juice are acceptable too.
Drink a glass of water around half an hour before each meal. You will be less hungry. It is also a good idea to have a drink along with your meal. However, drinking too much will dilute your stomach juices leading to impaired digestion.
Drinking a little at a time steadily throughout the day is generally the secret of success. But what if you are the type who just forgets to drink? Not to worry! There are a number of apps out there that you can use to remind you to drink on a regular basis. Alternatively, there are devices called drink managers that will chime a few times an hour to remind you to drink.
The prerequisite for being able to drink frequently is, of course, is the easy availability of water at all times. That can be easily accomplished by having refillable water bottles with you so can stay hydrated even while you're out and about. Nowadays you even get water bottles with a cooling insert for chilled refreshment on very hot days or during sporting activities.
As you can see, it is actually quite easy to drink enough water. So get started right away and do yourself a favour.