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Our bodies are more than 60% water and extremely sensitive to dehydration or any depletion of water content.
Dehydration can manifest itself in many ways.
It’s estimated more than 110 million people in America are prone to suffer from various pains and illnesses, many of which are induced by dehydration.
“Pain of dehydration” afflicts people in various ways not usually associated with dehydration.
But it’s not just dehydration concerning me, it’s also the toxins found in most (disinfected) water we drink.
Granted, these days we’re fortunate enough to have greater control over the water we drink as opposed to say, the air we breathe.
Worried about air quality? Here are the 5 natural ways to clean indoor air.
Our public health agencies concentrate on treating water to protect us from diseases, but ignore toxic contamination occurring thanks to the very chemicals they treat the water with.
It’s important to understand where our drinking water comes from and what’s actually in it.
Here’s what you can expect to learn in today’s post:
- The common “refreshing” drinks that actually make you thirstier…
- Which water filters work and which ones simply “work” your bank account…
- Why the timing of your drinking is much more important than the actual amount of water you’re drinking…
- Why you shouldn’t drink tap water unless you live in Amsterdam…
- And much more…
5 Signs You’re Not Sick, You’re Just Thirsty:
Our neurological processes are very; very sensitive to dehydration.
Not only do we get foggy and lethargic when thirsty, most of us also get cranky.
As little as a 2% decrease in water saturation within your body will noticeably slow your thought process and ability to remember.
Check out the 3 Hacks to Become Mentally Limitless.
I can’t tell you the last time I went anywhere without a water bottle in hand.
As a healthy and active adult, I lose up to 2-2.5 liters of water each day. Since I’m roughly 60% water, maintaining adequate hydration in order to consistently perform at optimum levels is crucial.
The best way to stay hydrated is to make water your drink of choice.
If your drink of choice is water you’re not likely to get dehydrated.
What’s the point of drinking anything else?
If you need flavor, try adding fresh fruit and or citrus to make it more appealing.
Drink Before You’re Thirsty
You’ll want to make it a point to drink water before you’re actually thirsty because the thirst sensation we acknowledge doesn’t appear until we’re already 1 or 2 % dehydrated.
A good rule of thumb is to always keep your urine clear or VERY slightly yellow tinged. And unless you happen to live in Amsterdam, where arguably the world’s cleanest tap water comes from – tap water in most of the world is not high quality so I’d avoid it.
According to the American College of Sports Medicine, in order to avoid dehydration, active people should drink at least 16- 20 ounces of fluid 1 – 2 hours before an outdoor activity.
After that, consume 6 to 12 ounces of fluid every 10 to 15 minutes you’re outside.
When you’re finished with the activity, drink more. Enough to replace what you lost: at least another 16 to 24 ounces (2- 3 cups)
But what ever you do, avoid the following “refreshing” drinks because they’ll make you thirstier.
These Refreshing Drinks Actually Make You Thirstier
Sports drinks (even the ones “with electrolytes”) are loaded with sugars and other diuretics like caffeine. These are known to make dehydration worse.
Many sports drinks include boosted levels of electrolytes, which help ATHLETES avoid such issues during and after exercise.
According to Gatorade.com, the key electrolytes in Gatorade are minerals sodium, potassium and chloride.
Electrolytes are naturally occurring ions regulating the body’s hydration and blood pH levels. They help govern muscle and nerve function by way of conducting electrical impulses.
Remember, all these sports drinks are ideally geared for athletes, participating in you guessed it – athletic competitions!
Your body likely needs more time to process these sugars, and therefore devotes some water away from other places in your system to break down the sugar. If your kidneys start producing more urine to try to eliminating the sugar and you lose enough fluid, dehydration can result.
Caffeine was heavily used in the 60s by runners in order to help spur them on. You know, the guys with those oversized t-shirts and short – shorts.
They used to go and do these 10k races for example and would guzzle down gallons of tea beforehand.
Caffeine can be great for that sort of thing, however they didn’t realize the long term damage they were doing to their body…because we didn’t know then what we know about caffeine now.
Caffeine does in fact act as a moderate diuretic but since the majority of people drink several caffeinated drinks daily, caffeine turns from a mild diuretic to legitimate concern.
Drinking caffeine in moderation, let’s say 1 or maybe 2 drinks daily, shouldn’t be an issue. However outrageous amounts like several cups of Joe or your favorite energy drinks are likely causing some serious dehydration.
I’d try to keep it to 3 cups or less per day as a healthy adult.
Alcohol is another known diuretic.
Somebody very close to me actually drank so much and dehydrated his brain so bad, he died.
When you drink alcoholic beverages, ever notice it causes you to urinate more frequently?
This is because alcohol reduces your circulating levels of ADH (anti- diuretic hormone). When ADH levels drop, your kidneys don’t reabsorb as much water; consequently producing more urine.
This frequent urination is what causes your body to become dehydrated.
Drinking plenty of water while consuming alcohol helps lessen dehydration, so I’d definitely consider how much water you’ve had before the next 4-fingers of scotch.
Stop Drinking Tap Water
I found out, that in the United States alone, over 70% of the population receives fluoridated water. I believe this to be very unhealthy despite the common “teeth argument.”
Fluoride is said to cause pineal gland calcification and forces heavy metals to remain in the body.
If you’ve been drinking tap water for a while, I’d get some fresh cilantro and start eating a lot of it; cilantro helps to purge heavy metals from the body.
Since you’re not going to be drinking tap water anymore, you’re likely going to start getting your water in bulk, which is a good call so long as you store it correctly. Otherwise you’re doing just as much harm to your body in the long run… allow me to explain.
Use Glass Water Containers Over Plastic.
Food safety studies have shown that chemicals in plastic break down and leach into the food they’re storing (especially when heated), which means we consume these foods along with the chemicals.
Not only does glass last longer than plastic, but it can also be used and washed repeatedly without sacrificing its shape, cleanliness, and durability.
It’s important to understand that when plastic is recycled it loses its integrity and DOES NOT get re-made into plastic bottles again.
Plastic is what I refer to as “down-cycled” and turned into other types of products. Glass, can be recycled over and over again without compromising quality.
Plastic is a porous material that absorbs and retains food colors and odors.
Glass is non-permeable and won’t absorb color or odor from food.
Purchase An Effective Water Filter
If you don’t want to go the bulk water purchasing route, I highly recommend you purchase an efficient water filter.
There are more than two thousand known contaminants present in tap water, including several known poisons.
The only way to ensure pure, contaminant-free drinking water is through a point-of-use filtration system.
With that, I’ve listed filters ranging from reverse osmosis to carbon filtration with pros and cons noted for each:
|Carbon Filter||If your concern is related to taste and odor, a carbon filter may be the way to go.
Carbon filtration relies on the fact that carbon adsorbs contaminants onto its surface. The surface area is maximized on activated carbon during manufacturing.
|Ultra Violet Treatment||Ultraviolet treatment is proven effective for killing unwanted bugs in your water lines. Ultra Violet Filtration DOES NOT clean heavy metals or other contaminants out of your water.|
|Reverse Osmosis||A great bet for getting heavy metals and most other contaminants out of the water, but also takes out most of the good minerals as well. We’re not meant to consume water in a pure state. Naked water strips the insides of pipes as it travels through. It’s said to have the same effect when traveling through your body, and can strip you of vital minerals as it passes - this effect can be mitigated by adding mineral rocks to your holding tank.|
|Distillation||This process separates water from inorganic compounds like lead‚ magnesium‚ calcium‚ et cetera. Distillation passes water over a heated coil‚ causing the water to vaporize and become gaseous. Distillation also destroys bacteria. This process is not very effective at removing organic chemicals since they typically vaporize at a lower temperature than water and are transferred in the steam. This is why distiller filters need to be used along with a carbon filter.|
|Pitchers & Carafe Filters||Pitchers and carafe filters are lower quality filters at a higher price. In recent years both these types of filters have emerged as low cost alternatives to tap water and bottled water. Keeping in mind that any filter is better than no filter‚ these products are by far the least effective and the most expensive to use.|
|Dual Stage Filters||These filter out chlorine‚ copepods, lead‚ synthetic chemicals‚ VOCs, THMs‚ MTBE, Turbidity, Cysts (chlorine resistant parasites) and leaves in natural trace minerals, for naturally healthy, great tasting water. Dual filter systems use a combination of carbon filtration‚ ion exchange and sub-micron filtration to produce truly healthy‚ great tasting water.|
Now that you’ve got a handle on avoiding dehydration, living healthy and at an optimum level, it’s time to put it all together, which is exactly what we do in the next post.