Water – The Vital Fluid

Water – The Vital Fluid

Water is found in every cell of your body and plays an important role in all its vital processes. Being properly hydrated helps to:

• Enhance digestion and metabolism

• Boost brain function

• Regulate body temperature

• Carry nutrients, oxygen, enzymes and glucose to the cells

• Remove toxins and other metabolic waste from the body

• Cushion joints and strengthen muscles

Staying properly hydrated will help keep your body feeling great and performing at its best. Proper hydration increases energy levels, makes you more alert and can even help reduce stress.

Common signs of dehydration can include achy joints and muscles, fatigue, headaches and dry skin. More serious dehydration can lead to dizziness and nausea and in more extreme cases, death.

Tips for Staying Properly Hydrated:

• Drink at least 6-8 glasses of fluid every day. Drink a variety of fluids, but watch out for beverages that contain caffeine or alcohol as these substances act as a diuretic, causing the body to lose fluids.

• Don't wait until you feel thirsty before drinking, as you will already be mildly dehydrated.

• Carry a bottle of water around with you, keep a bottle in the car and one at your desk.

• Drink plenty of fluids before, during and after physical activity.

• Increase your fluid intake during warmer weather and at higher altitudes.

• Check your urine. It should be clear to pale yellow in color. If your urine is dark yellow, you probably need to increase your water intake. You should be urinating every 2 to 3 hours during the day.

• Normal total body water percentage (TBW %) ranges are 45% to 60% for females and 50% to 65% for males.  For athletes, the figure is approximately 5% above these ranges, as they have greater muscle mass and skeletal muscle contains more water than fat (adipose) tissue.

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