Welcome to the ten week New Year Health Challenge, courtesy of Christine Kling of Body Basics LLC in Boise ID.
Hydration is the most important building block to your health and vitality, which is why it is the #1 focus of this challenge. Without the proper amount of water, your organs and muscular system do not function properly.
It is very easy to overlook our body’s cry for water. So many people suffer from chronic dehydration and don’t even know it. Are you one of these?
Take a look at some commonly overlooked symptoms of chronic dehydration. They are:
- Digestive disturbances such as heartburn and constipation
- Urinary tract infections
- Autoimmune disease such as chronic fatigue syndrome and multiple sclerosis
- Premature aging
- High cholesterol
- Weight gain
How Much Water Should You Drink?
So how much water should you drink per day? Six or eight glasses?
Here’s a good rule of thumb:
You should be drinking enough water to turn your urine a light-colored yellow.
If you are doing vigorous exercise, it is advisable to increase your water intake as needed. It is also important to note that as you age, your thirst mechanism works less efficiently. Older adults need to pay more attention to the color of their urine to see if their water intake is adequate.
Listening to Your Body
By the time your body is thirsty, it is probably already a bit dehydrated. Besides thirst, here are some other more subtle signals your body sends indicating you need to drink more water:
- Fatigue and/or mood swings
- Hunger even though you’ve recently eaten
- Dizziness or lightheaded feeling
- Back, joint aches, or headaches
- Dull, dry skin and/or pronounced wrinkles
- Infrequent urination; dark, concentrated urine, and/or constipation
Health Benefits of Drinking Pure Water
We know the cost of not drinking enough water, but what does hydration help your body do?
- Maintain a healthy body weight
- Properly digest food and absorb nutrients from food
- Have healthy, glowing skin
- Decrease muscle and joint inflammation
- Have better circulation
- Detoxify your body naturally
In order to obtain great hydration, water is not the only fluid necessary to be successful. Coconut Water has become more popular in the recent years but not just for its taste. It also has some great health benefits, too.
Coconuts are an excellent source of fresh, pure water and electrolytes. Coconuts are also rich in lauric acid, which is known for its immune-boosting as well as its antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal properties, so it’s an ideal choice when you’re sick or just finishing an intense workout.
Infused water is a way to make your water look pretty and a way to add some fantastic healthy benefits to your enjoyment. Depending on the different fruits and herbs you place in your pitcher, infused water can aid digestion, reduce headaches, help with fat burning, boost your immune system, help regulate blood sugar and benefit cardiovascular health!
50% of body weight = fluid ounces needed. Increase % to 65% if exercising that day…. If you’re urine is still yellow, drink more water!
Drinks That Count:
Water, Smart Water, Coconut Water, Unsweetened Sparkling Water (Perrier, La Criox, etc.), Homemade Sports Drink & Infused Water (see recipes), and Teas (esp. green tea!)
Drinks That Do NOT Count:
Anything with added sugars, artificial sweeteners, or dyes (sodas, diet sodas, juices, Gatorade, etc.); milk; coffee; alcohol
EVERYDAY YOU START THE DAY NEW WITH 1 POINT. If you drink the recommended amount of water, you get 1 point. If you do not drink 50 – 65% of your body weight in fluid ounces for that day, then, you forfeit the 1 point and have zero for the day. Your goal is to get 7 points at the end of the week.
Click here for Challenge Log.
Christine Kling is co-owner of Body Basics and privileged to share the business with her husband, James. Her passion for health and fitness began as a teen playing sports (basketball and tennis) and dancing, which led her to become a personal trainer and group exercise instructor at the age of 17. Struggling with a thyroid disorder and adrenal fatigue from Hashimoto’s auto-immune disorder also increased her love for helping people in the area of nutrition. She has experienced first-hand how diet and exercise can beat the odds! Youth Fitness, Pre-natal/Post-natal Fitness, Senior Fitness, Mat Sciences, and Indoor Cycling have been her areas of continued study and experience. A favorite quote of hers is “If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you!”