We’ve all hear it before: water is life. In fact, every single system in your body needs it to survive. Water makes up about 60% of your body, and while you can survive without food for weeks, dehydration can kill you within days or even hours.
What is Dehydration?
Dehydration means more water is moving out of your body's cells than into them. In addition to water, small amounts of electrolytes critical to cell function and energy, such as sodium and potassium, are also lost when you become dehydrated.
Why You Should Drink More Water
To perform at your peak, hydration is absolutely key. Did you know that as little as a 1% water loss can affect electrolyte balance and a 3% water loss can result in fatigue and impaired exercise performance? That’s not a lot of margin to mess around with, so hydration is clearly critical.
How Much Water Do You Need a Day?
The best way to stay hydrated is to drink ½ your body weight in fluid ounces of water every day. Coconut water is a tasty choice because it not only replenishes lost electrolytes during long, intense workouts, but it is also packed full of nutrients and antioxidants.
Beware of Sports Drinks
Many athletes choose sports drinks because they contain carbohydrate sugars, vitamins and minerals. If you choose a sports drink, be sure you read the label in order to avoid artificial colors, flavors and sweeteners.
Hungry? You're Probably Thirsty
In the brain, the hunger and thirst centers are located next to each other. Often, when we think we’re hungry, we’re actually thirsty. To avoid overeating at meals, drink a glass of water 15-20 minutes before you eat. It will ensure that you’re properly hydrated and will help to fill up your stomach.
More Expert Fitness Tips
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