By now you’ve probably heard about the importance of drinking water and staying hydrated for your overall health and wellness. But water has even more magical properties: Hydration can also be considered key to helping you achieve your bridal health and beauty goals, too.
So whether you travel with your trusty water bottle, or find it nearly impossible to reach the recommended intake levels (what are they, really?) we’re here to help. BRIDES spoke with Shira Sussi, Clinical Nutritionist at New York-Presbyterian for expert insight into the world of H2O.
The body is made up mostly of—you guessed it—water. Which is one of the main reasons why it’s imperative to maintain hydration. According to Thought Co., the average amount of water in the human body ranges from 50-75%, with women containing a lower percentage of water than babies or men.
Aside from making up over half our bodies, Sussi says, “It’s an essential component of all body tissues, plays a role in digestion, absorption and excretion processes, helps maintain body temperature."
If you’re looking to get healthy or drop a few pounds, water may also be able to aid in weight loss, water retention and bloating, too. Sussi explains, “Research has shown water consumption plays a role in resting energy expenditure,” adding that choosing to drink water over other sugary or caloric drinks will lead to reduced calorie intake, as water has no calories. Thus, reduced calorie intake will reduce risk of weight gain.
To combat bloating, it’s recommended to lay off the high-salt foods—if do you give in to indulgences, you might end up retaining or holding on to water. Instead of that plate of salty french fries, chug an ice-cold class of water! Your body will thank you later.
Skin & Energy Benefits
Aside from keeping you healthy and hydrated, extra perks of hydration include energy boosts and skin health as well. Sussi explains that water plays a role in energy levels because, “it’s a transport medium for micronutrients to reach all areas of the body.” So if you’re feeling a bit more sluggish than usual, it might be a good idea to drink up.
In regards to your skin, water helps rid the body of toxins—AKA why it helps play a role in skin health, explains Sussi.
How To Meet Your Water Goals
There are some simple ways to ensure you’re drinking enough water throughout the day. While wedding planning is of course an extremely busy time, setting a reminder on your phone every hour to take some sips, or purchasing one of these handy Hidrate Spark 2.0 water bottles that glows to remind you to drink can go a long way in ensuring you’re steadily sipping away throughout the day.
If you’re not a fan of water (for some people, it really does have a taste they disapprove of), consider adding some fresh fruit or mint to spice it up a bit, eat foods with high water content like watermelon or cucumbers, and watch your caffeine intake, as it can dehydrate you.
How Much Should You Be Drinking?
According to the Mayo Clinic, "The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine determined that an adequate daily fluid intake is: About 15.5 cups (3.7 liters) of fluids for men and about 11.5 cups (2.7 liters) of fluids a day for women."
However Stussi says: "It’s hard to say because water balance is influenced by so many things, including fluid intake, food intake (water in food), water output—through skin as sweat—hot weather vs. normal temperature, and prolonged exercise.” To further complicate things, she explains that perspiration losses also vary greatly from person to person.
After examining your habits and typical intakes, you can generally figure out the best amount of water for you, or can always consult your doctor at your next visit.
Another indicator of adequate hydration is the color of your urine. According to the Cleveland Clinic, “The color, density and smell of urine can reveal much about your state of health,” including hydration or dehydration. Utilizing their handy chart entitled “The Color of Pee,” a pale, straw color indicates that, “You’re normal, healthy, and well-hydrated,” while a dark yellow hue indicates, “normal, but drink some water soon, and a dark amber or honey color tells you you’re not getting enough, and to drink some “now.”