What You Should Know
- 75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated.
- In 37% of Americans, the thirst mechanism is so weak that it is often mistaken for hunger.
- Water consumption increases your resting metabolic rate, which transfers into more fat loss. One experiment measured the effects on 7 men and 7 women who drank 500 milliliters, or just over a pint, of water. That amount resulted in a 30% increase in resting metabolic rate within 10 minutes of drinking, and reached maximum effects in 30-40 minutes.
- One glass of water will shut down midnight hunger pangs for almost 100% of
- the dieters studied in a University of Washington study.
- Lack of water, the #1 trigger of daytime fatigue.
- Preliminary research indicates that 8-10 glasses of water a day could significantly ease back and joint pain for up to 80% of sufferers.
- Drinking 5 glasses of water daily decreases the risk of colon cancer by 45%, plus it can slash the risk of breast cancer by 79%, and one is 50% less likely to develop bladder cancer. Water dilutes and eliminates carcinogens.
- The human body is 60% water. Babies are approx. 70% water.
- Muscle is 72% water, and fat is about 10% water.
- Intracellular water accounts for two-thirds of the body’s water, and the other third is extracellular.
- Hydration of a muscle cell leads to an increase in muscle protein synthesis. This creates an anabolic state, or state of growth. When a cell is dehydrated it favors a catabolic state, or muscle tissue breakdown.
- Dehydrated cells characterize many diseases, such as cancer.
- The structures of protein contain water, as does glycogen, the stored form of carbohydrates in the body. Each gram of glycogen is stored with 3 grams of water.
- Water is the primary solvent, dissolving various nutrients. These nutrients include: minerals, vitamins, amino acids, and glucose. Water also aids in the digestion and absorption of these nutrients, as well as their transport through the blood stream and into the tissues and cells.
- A large percentage of blood is comprised of water. By restricting your water intake, you end up retaining more. This is due to a protective mechanism your body uses to maintain proper blood volume.
- The temperature of the water you drink plays a role in how powerful the thermogenic effect becomes. The colder the water, the more your body has to work to bring it to normal temperature. This causes you to expend an additional amount of calories due to the amount of energy used.
- Drinking too much water can be dangerous. More is not always better. Too much can dilute the electrolytes needed for brain function, as well as lead to convulsions even death. Losing too much sodium causes edema, or swelling of the brain.
How much water should I drink?
Calculating the total amount of water needed on a daily basis is fairly easy and can be done in a number of ways. Three of the more popular methods I use with my clients are:
- Drink half of a gallon of water for every 100 lbs. of body weight, per day. For example, if you weigh 150 lbs. you would drink 3/4 of a gallon of water per day.
- Drink 0.6 ounces of water per pound of bodyweight per day. I have found this amount to be a little short of what is needed for those who are physically active, but it’s close to the above figure.
- Drink one milliliter of water (each ounce contains 30 milliliters) for each calorie you consume. So, for every 1,000 calories you consume you should drink approx. 1 quart of water.
Preventing dehydration during exercise
Here are three ways to ensure proper hydration during your workouts or other physical activity:
- Drink about 20 oz. of water a couple hours prior to your workout.
- Drink up to a quart of water during exercise.
- Drink between 150-200% of the total fluids lost, following the workout. This is also a great time to supplement with electrolytes, as these will need to be replaced.