Hi, It’s Sam from First City Wellness!
You’re now reading the first of a series of blog posts I’ll be making here about general health concerns and tips. Today, we’re going to be talking about good ol’ H2O. More importantly, we’re going to be talking about how you’re not drinking enough of it, and what you can do about it.
To start, a primer on water. You may have heard once or twice in your life that somewhere around two thirds of your body consists of water. That’s mostly true. The average male consists of 60% water and the average female consists of 64% water, spread throughout your various tissues, fluids and body parts. Your brain and heart are 73% water, your lungs are about 83% water. Skin weighs in at 64%, muscles and kidneys at 79%, and even your bones clock in at 31% water! (H.H. Mitchel, Journal of Biological Chemistry 158)
“I get it, I get it,” you say. “So it’s important. What does that mean?” It’s used in your entire body, and when you’re not drinking enough you suffer. It lubricates your joints, it fills the space between and inside your cells. Your body uses it to moves things through itself, and also helps you get rid of toxins and other bad things. Not enough water could possibly be the cause of that headache you wrestle with regularly, why your skin looks dull, dead, or breaking out, why you have some digestive issues or irregularities, or why you suffer from cramps in extremities. Don’t wake up in the middle of the night with a cramp in your calf again!
So how much water should you be drinking? Most experts will tell you that you should take your weight (in pounds) and divide it in half. That result is the number of fluid ounces of water you should be drinking a day. For instance, a 200 lb. man should be drinking 100 fl. oz. of water a day.
“That’s a lot, Sam!” Why yes, imaginary argumentative strawperson, it is. In my personal experience, chances are better than good that you do not drink even close to that amount. I almost never make that quota. But drinking water every day is important for your body to continue functioning in the way that it’s meant to. Even attempt to get closer to that value, and you’ll notice how much happier your body is in no time. You can build up to that value gradually, and I’ve got some pointers for you to continue drinking lots.
Drink filtered or purified water when possible: Water from the tap is easy to get, but it comes into contact with pipes. Which means it picks up odd contaminants along the way, namely heavy metals. Your body will get rid of these most of the time, though buildup isn’t very good for you. However, depending on where you live, your water may have other more troublesome things in it. Oregon City, for example, has a LOT of metal in the water, thanks to out of commision mill. Filter your water. Your body will thank you. We have an awesome filter here at the clinic that makes alkaline, ionized water. I'll write more about that in a future post.
Don’t drink your water too cold: Ice water is delicious, but it’s hard to drink lots of quickly, and frankly it’s not the best way to ingest. Water that is significantly different from your own body temperature doesn’t assimilate into the body quickly. Your body has to waste energy bringing that water up to a temperature that it can work with. It’s not ever going to be the death of you, and you don’t have to drink warm or hot water, but ice water is something you should avoid when possible. Lightly chilled, or room-temperature, is perfectly fine.
Don’t nuke your water: Imagine that you’re trying to make tea, and don’t have access to a kettle. Don’t just pour water into a cup and microwave it. That trusty science oven works by vigorously vibrating the molecules in the food you’re cooking. This vibration actually warps the shape of the H2O molecule structure, almost completely killing its absorption rate in the body. It’s not going to harm you, but this altered water is going to go right through you without doing any good! Always heat water by more natural means.
I’ve heard more than once “but I don’t particularly care for the taste of plain water.” Yeah, I can see why. There’s nothing interesting going on there. However, you can put things in there to make it taste better! If you know me, then you know I’m a Wellness Advocate with doTERRA essential oils. Their oils are Certified Therapeutic Grade, and are third party tested into oblivion to make sure they are perfectly safe to ingest. This means you can add extra flavor, and extra healing and cleansing properties with them. Try a couple drops of lemon oil. Lemon tastes and smells excellent, and aids in cleansing toxins from the body. Wild orange can uplift your mood, and grapefruit (maybe my favorite for water) can aid in appetite regulation as well as detoxification. Need to keep your immune system strong? Try just two or so drops of On Guard in your water. It can help you feel better if you feel like you’re fighting something. Take it every day and enjoy how much less you get sick. Upset stomach? A little DigestZen in your water can help clear that up. There’s always something that you can put in water that will work for you.
As I always say, when ingesting essential oils, make sure your drinking vessel is a glass. NO PLASTIC! Drinking out of plastic bottles or cups is mostly fine (I’m sure you can find plenty of reading on that subject), but essential oils can leech very harmful toxins out of plastic. Glass, earthenware (like mugs) and stainless steel are all fine vessels. Just please do me a favor and don’t drop it in your Crystal Geyser.
That was long-winded wasn’t it? Thank you for reading about water for better health. This is the first in a series on health and general lifestyle tips for the betterment of your self. If you want to know more about adding essential oils into your life, feel free to contact me directly so you can ask me questions and even set up a consultation. You can also visit my affiliate link here, to shop now directly from the source:
Take care, and stay hydrated!
Melissa West LAc, LE is the founder of FCW. She has a passion for holistic health and beauty.