Please note: All the material in this blog is excerpt from the book “The Great American Detox” by Alex Jamieson
Chapter 4 highlights the importance of water. Drinking 10 glasses of water replaces the water we lose during the day which consists of 2.5 liters. We lose 2 cups of water due to perspiration, 2 cups due to respiration, and 6 cups due to urination. An individual becomes dehydrated when we lack 1-2% of our weight in fluids. This can affect the brain, kidney and heart. Seventy-five percent of us are dehydrated on a regular basis and 37% of us mistake hunger for thirst. Mild dehydration can slow the body’s metabolic process and over tax our kidneys. Symptoms of dehydration include; dry mouth, fatigue, lethargy, muscle weakness or cramps, headaches, dizziness, nausea, and forgetfulness. Severe dehydration can cause mental confusion, asthma attacks, and sunken eyes. Check your urine for signs of dehydration which would be bright or dark yellow with a strong smell. In extreme cases of dehydration heat stroke can occur which could ultimately lead to death.
A really great suggestion for adding water to your day would be to get a beautiful glass pitcher for your water and put it on a pretty tray with matching glasses, add citrus fruit like lemons, limes or oranges or cucumber, fresh mint or basil for a subtle flavor.
- Do you drink 8-10 glasses of water every day?
- Do you drink soda? If so, how often?
- Do you drink coffee? If so, how much?
- Do you drink water while you exercise?
- Do you drink water when you travel, especially by plane?
- Do you urinate frequently and is your urine clear?
*Now take a step back and look at your answers. If you’re like most of us, I bet you’ll put down that pen and go get a glass of water right away!
Water is extremely important to our skin, joints, body temperature and plays a role in disease prevention when it comes to colon and breast cancer, and rheumatoid arthritis. It slows symptoms of hypoglycemia, obesity, diabetes, cataracts and glaucoma.
Electrolytes are often spoken of when it comes to dehydration but folks very rarely know what electrolytes are. Electrolytes are a type of salt made up of ions that are positively and negatively charged which transfer electrical messages across cells which makes our body function. Water has electrolytes so no need to down sports drinks since most of us are not elite athletes and need a huge amount for endurance sports. Sea vegetables are also a good source of electrolytes.
The kidney regulates fluids in our bodies and to ensure your kidneys are healthy Alex suggests eating more asparagus, bananas, celery, cucumbers, garlic, legumes, papaya, parsley, plain yogurt, pumpkin, raw foods, seeds, soybeans, Spirulina, sprouts, watercress, watermelon, and whole grains. The supplement acidophilus also supports kidney health. She suggests eating less of beet greens, meat, phosphates, potassium, rhubarb, spinach, and swiss chard and to avoid eating chocolate, cocoa, dairy and eggs. Drinking 10 glasses of water each day supports kidney health.
Water fights fat! Water suppresses appetite and helps the body metabolize fat. Drinking lots of water also assists in water retention which can cause swelling of hands, feet and legs.
Extra water is also necessary if you indulge in salt, alcohol or caffeine.
Quality of water is just as important as the quantity you drink. If you drink unfiltered water from the tap make sure to leave it out uncovered at room temperature an hour before drinking it. Many of the chemicals, like chlorine will evaporate. Alex does make a huge case for filtered or bottled water as she outlines the vast majority of chemicals that can be found in the water. Right here in Colorado we are lucky to have Eldorado Natural Spring Water available to us. This water is by far the best tasting water I’ve personally had. It’s easy to drink water when it’s so fresh and bottled at the source. Check out http://eldoradosprings.com/ for their plans and prices, and if you want more personal attention contact Chad Bauer at (303) 604-3032.
Suggestions to boost water intake:
- Drink 1-2 glasses as soon as you wake-up in the morning to rehydrate your body.
- Keep a pitcher of filtered water near you at work to drink during the day.
- Drink a glass of water before exercising.
- Drink 8 oz of water for every 15-20 minutes of exercise.
- Avoid dehydrating drinks with caffeine or alcohol.
Alex presents a small section at the end of the chapter on self-care. She suggests trying an herbal bath, you’ll find different recipes for the bath on page 62. One bath that I really like is soaking in Epsom Salts which is detoxifying and relaxing.
Finally, sit in a quite place for your mental detox. This should take no longer than an hour.
Have a great week everyone!