Someone emailed me with the suggestion to do a blog post about light cocktail recipes. Personally, I’m still in weight-loss mode, and alcohol at 7 calories/gram does not fit into my daily plan. I look at alcohol as a treat. Something to have on a rare occasion. I’m not recommending that you all completely go dry, but there are no nutrients or benefits in alcohol, and a whole mess of calories. If weight loss is your focus, and alcohol is a daily habit, you might want to rethink it.
However, the questioner got me thinking. My beverage of choice is water, and I thought I’d give you some information about why water is so healthy for you, and why you want to be drinking lots of “cocktails” of clean fresh water.
Our bodies are 60% water! Water contains electrolytes and major minerals and it carries nutrients and oxygen to every cell in the body. Water controls the temperature of the body and it cleans the stomach and aids in digestion. Water also cleans the intestines and improves absorption of nutrients, and it removes toxins from the body. When we are dehydrated, our body is not functioning as efficiently as it can be, and we might feel lousy as a result.
Most of us are walking around dehydrated to some degree. Only water is going to serve the functions listed above. When you add things to water, such as fruit, or flavoring agents, the digestive system is activated, and the water will go there, instead of everywhere else in your body. Drinking water with meals, will rehydrate your food, not your body, so you want to drink your water before meals and between meals.
While thirst, fatigue, headaches and poor skin condition can be signs that you are dehydrated, in today’s society, most folks are not aware that they are low on water. My general rule of thumb these days with a headache is to have the glass of water without the aspirin/advil and see how I’m feeling in 20-30 minutes. Often I was lacking water, not pain medicine.
So, how much water should we be drinking? Humans should be ingesting 64 ounces of water each day to replace water lost thru excretion, elimination, and breathing. More water is required if you are overweight (8 ounces per 25 excess pounds), exercising, and if it is hot/dry outside. Children should be drinking 50% of their body weight in ounces of water. In fact, water should be the beverage of choice for children.
Some tips for drinking more water. Purify it. Municipalities need to chlorinate our water to kill germs and bacteria. That is not a bad thing, but we don’t really want to be drinking chlorine, plus it doesn’t taste all that good. A charcoal filter system will remove impurities from the water, while leaving in the necessary minerals.
Carry a water bottle around with you, and based on how much it holds, make sure to fill it enough times to get in all your water. You probably will do better having that water throughout the day, rather than all just before bedtime. The first week might feel strange. All that water will have you looking for rest stops, but your body will adjust, and will thank you for the hydration. Some folks find that the colder the water, the better it tastes. That might be a personal preference. I find I liked colder water in the summer, but in the winter, I’m fine with either cold water or room temperature.
Won’t you join me in raising a glass of cold water? Cheers!