Tis' the season. With all this hot weather creeping up on us and scheduling a busy summer to keep the kids occupied, who has time to think of what's best for ourselves? Keep your health in check and list your needs also. This includes sun block, sunglasses, healthy nonperishable foods and snacks, handi-wipes, and plenty of water, water, and more water. Our bodies can survive longer without food than we can without water. Especially is you perspire a lot, be prepared. If you are active you lose more water than if you are sedentary. Diuretics such as caffeine and alcohol cause us to lose water by tricking our bodies into thinking we have more water than we need. Symptoms of mild dehydration include chronic pains in joints and muscles, lower back pain, headaches, and constipation. A strong odor to your urine, along with a yellow or amber color indicates that you are not getting enough water. (Riboflavin, a B Vitamin, will make your urine bright yellow.) Thirst is an obvious sign of dehydration and in fact, you need water long before you feel thirsty. We lose water through urination, respiration, and by sweating.
Our bodies are estimated to be about 60 to 70% water. Blood is mostly water, and our muscles, lungs, and brain all contain a lot of water. Water is needed to regulate body temperature and to provide the means for nutrients to travel to all our organs. Water also transports oxygen to our cells, removes waste, and protects our joints and organs. A good rule of thumb is to take your body weight in pounds and divide that number in half. That gives you the number of ounces of water per day that you need to drink. Your daily need for water can add up to quite a lot.
Regular or Diet Sodas are not a good source of water. Juices and sodas have a lot of sugar in them and aren't a good choice, so don't count them towards your daily amount. Herbal teas that aren't diuretic are fine. Sports drinks contain electrolytes and may be beneficial, just look out for added sugar and calories that you don't need. There are some brands of flavored water available, but some of them have sugar or artificial sweeteners which you don't need. If you get bored with plain water, add a bit of lemon or lime for a touch of flavor.
The best source of water is plain, pure drinking water. I rest my H2O case.