We’ve all heard it before: Drink 8 glasses a day. No, 10. No, 6. No, Take your body weight and do some math (ugh).
There are a lot of differing opinions out there (much like with food) and many of them are sound and good. So how do you know which is best for you?
The Answer: You have to tune in and find out. Here are a few quick tips on the best way to make the most out of drinking your water.
1. Drink 2-4 cups with lemon upon waking.
When we sleep, our bodies are very busy repairing and detoxing. When we awaken, we are actually quite dehydrated. When you wake up squeeze a wedge of lemon into a glass of water and drink it. T
he lemon helps cleanse your liver and flush out toxins as the water hydrates you. My Nana used to do this every morning. It’s a terrific way to start hydrating and getting in your glasses of water.
2. Don’t drink water while you eat.
When we chew, we release digestive enzymes –digestion begins in the mouth. If we down water with our food, we dilute our digestive juices and hamper, digestion and absorption. Wait 20-30 minutes before or after you eat to drink your water — in between meals.
3. Drink throughout the day, and stop a few hours before bed.
This differs for everyone, find your optimum stopping point so that you may have a full night’s rest without waking for trips to the bathroom.
4. How much?
While it’s important to hydrate, how much water depends on what you’re eating. If you’re diet is rich with raw fruits and vegetables, you’ll find you need less water. If you eat a lot of cooked foods (the water cooks out) you’ll require more water by the glass. It’s important for you to be the judge. Too much water drinking can tax the kidneys.
Not enough water can cause dehydration, increased appetite, dry skin, hair, brittle nails, sluggishness, constipation and whole host of other things. There are some health professionals that believe the root of most disease is chronic dehydration. I believe that we are all different and our job is to tune into our unique body to find out what it needs.
I know that when I follow the steps above, I stay regular (who doesn’t want that?), my skin looks great, my energy flows, and I feel good. I do however, have to make a conscious effort to hydrate, the habit comes and goes for me. What about you?
Test out steps 1 -3 for a week and let me know what you find out. How much water are you drinking now? What are your water drinking goals?