Every day, you lose water through your breath, sweat, and other bodily functions. Staying hydrated is important because so many metabolic reactions in your body rely on water. But how do you know how much water you need? How do you know if you’re getting enough?
TIP #1 – If your urine is not colorless or light yellow, you’re probably dehydrated
How much water you need varies based on your activity levels, your general health and your surroundings, like the temperature and humidity. It can be tough to keep track of how many ounces of water you’ve consumed in a day, and even tougher to drink water when it’s so humid outside. The color of your urine is a quick and easy way to see if you’re fully hydrated.
TIP #2 – If you’re thirsty, you’re already dehydrated
The sensation of thirst occurs when someone is approximately 2% dehydrated – meaning 2% of body weight is lost as water. That may not sound like a lot, but symptoms of heat exhaustion start around 6% dehydration. A hormone in the body called the antidiuretic hormone (ADH) is responsible for the sensation of thirst, and ADH triggers a bunch of other reactions to tell the body to conserve water. These reactions affect the kidneys, the liver, blood vessels and blood pressure, so it’s much better to listen to ADH and drink water as soon as you start to feel thirsty.
TIP #3 – It’s not just water that counts toward hydration
You may have heard the recommendation to drink 8 glasses of water a day, but the truth is that water doesn’t have to come from, well, water. Getting water from water-rich food like cucumbers, tomatoes, lettuce and oranges counts too! Caffeinated beverages like Avitae can also help you stay hydrated because the diuretic effect of caffeine is pretty much insignificant unless you consume over 300 mg of caffeine.
TIP #4 – Make drinking water fun
Drinking water can sometimes be, well…boring. Bust that boredom by trying something new. Try a new Avitae flavor, try squeezing a lemon into your water or adding sliced cucumbers to add a little flavor. Try freezing blueberries and small chunks of fruit in ice cube trays, then add to a glass of Avitae or water to make it look more colorful.
TIP #5 – Make it a game
Turn drinking water into a game. Every time your Fitbit tells you it’s “Step-o-Clock,” use that as a reminder to take a few more sips of water. Turn your boring lectures or meetings into a game by picking a cue or phrase your professor or boss always uses as a signal to take a few sips. Pick a friend who is also trying to stay hydrated and challenge each other to come up with new reminders to drink water.