The average adult should drink at a MINIMUM 2 litres, or eight glasses, of water daily. This is no urban myth.

The average adult loses over 2.5 litres of water every day. Drinking eight glasses of water only replenishes what the body naturally loses through breathing, sweating and urination. The other 0.5 litres of water is gained in your food consumption.

The human body is composed of 50 to 75% water (depending upon sex and body type) and water is vital for the proper functioning of every organ.

There is much research demonstrating the benefits of hydration. Among its many functions, water is responsible for carrying nutrients and oxygen to cells (our blood is 95% water), regulating body temperature, lubricating joints and cleansing toxins and waste from our bodies. The human brain alone is composed of 75% water, while our skin is 70% water. That is why one of the first effects of dehydration is headaches and dry skin.

Good hydration enables:

  • Mental alertness (improves ability to concentrate)
  • Improved digestion (reduces constipation and improves nutrient distribution)
  • Soft skin (lessens wrinkles and bags)
  • Weight loss (helps satisfy feelings of hunger)
  • Relief of pain (dehydration makes one more susceptible to pain)
  • Improved athletic performance (dehydration causes lethargy)
  • Reduced susceptibility to kidney stones (kidneys function properly)
  • A stronger immune system (toxins are flushed out)

Research has also shown a link between hydration and the reduction of cardiovascular disease and the risk of various cancers (breast, colon and bladder).

Being hydrated has undisputable benefits for our overall health. But how do we maintain hydration when we’re busy working, exercising or travelling? Here are some tips:

  • Always drink a large amount of water after waking up (your body will have lost a considerable amount of water during the night through sweating).
  • Fill up a large re-useable water bottle every morning and take it to work, drinking from it throughout the day.
  • Drink before and after exercise to replace lost fluids.
  • Cut down on drinks with high-levels of caffeine (a diuretic). 
  • Avoid drinks with artificial sweeteners or high levels of sugar.
  • When drinking alcohol, ensure that you’re also drinking plenty of water.
  • Get in the habit of reaching for a glass of water first when you feel hungry.
  • Eat plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, which all have a high water content
  • Avoid processed foods that are high in salt

The benefits of hydration to your overall wellness far outweigh the trouble of reaching for a glass of water. Being hydrated helps put you squarely on the path to better health.

Natalie Skinner

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