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Our bodies all need water to survive, but waiting until your body is dehydrated isn’t ideal. Water is required to cushion and lubricate your joints, protect your brain and other internal tissues. Water also helps to promote healthy teeth and gums by washing away cavity-causing bacteria. Here are 10 easy ways to drink more water.
Add Some Flavor
Fresh fruit like grapefruit, strawberries, lemon or veggie slices like cucumber and ginger can easily add flavor to your water to make it more appealing. Flavored beverages are typically easier to drink, meaning you are much more likely to consume a more considerable amount. Try infusing your water with your favorite fresh fruits and play around with different combinations.
Drink a Glass After You Use the Bathroom
Link a habit of drinking water with one of your most common daily activities – going to the bathroom. Every time you get up from your workspace for a bathroom break, take an extra minute to fill up your water bottle on your way back. Creating this habit will set up a great cycle.
Invest in a Fun Water Bottle
What better way to take your tracking to the next level than with a high-tech water bottle that does the monitoring for you? These customized daily water intake bottles send you notifications when it’s time to take a sip, and it also logs your intake.
Use a Marked Water Bottle
Seeing your progress as you go can be very encouraging. Having a fun, visual way to see that your efforts are adding up is a great way to make a habit of drinking more water stick. Mark your bottle with ounces or even hours to help you reach your personal water goals each day.
Use Reusable Straws
Using a straw means you will drink faster, leading you to drink more water. Skip the disposable plastic straws that are harmful to our planet and invest in some reusable ones. Not only will you always have a straw on hand, but you will be doing your body and our planet a favor.
Try Out Herbal Teas
Whether you like citrus, floral, hot or iced tea, there are many options available to choose from. Make a large batch of tea in the morning and store it in a glass pitcher in the refrigerator for refills. Not only are herbal teas calorie-free, but most don’t have any added sugars either, making them just as beneficial (if not more) as water.
Set Mini Goals
Create mini goals for yourself throughout the day, so you don’t find yourself trying to drink six glasses of water at 7 pm before you go to bed for the night. Drinking two glasses of water by 10 am, four by lunch, and six by 3 pm is a great way to ensure you stay on track throughout the day.
Use an App
There are great apps available for your smartphone, such as Water Logged, that will help you keep track of how much water you have consumed throughout the day. Using an app is also a great way to send yourself reminders to keep your liquid intake up throughout the day.
Drink Water Before a Meal
This simple rule can significantly increase your water intake, and may also help you lose weight. In many cases, we are often just thirsty rather than hungry. Before you grab for that afternoon snack, have a glass of water first. It will help to fill you up and consume fewer calories.
Always Keep Water Within Reach
Headed to your car? Don’t forget to grab your water bottle! Always having water on hand will keep you hydrated if you’re stuck in traffic or worse if you get stuck on the side of the road somewhere.
How Much Water Do I Need?
While it’s difficult to determine an exact ideal amount, there are some general guidelines you can follow:
- Men should drink about 3 liters (13 cups) of total fluids a day.
- Women should drink about 2.2 liters (9 cups) of total fluids a day.
It’s also best to keep your daily activities in mind, too. If you’re exercising or doing any strenuous work, staying hydrated beforehand can ensure you feel good during and after your workout. The same goes if you’ve been drinking a lot of coffee, caffeinated tea, or alcohol. If you are in a warmer climate, you perspire more, and your body needs more water than you would in a temperate zone.
Have any great tips of your own for how you were able to increase your water intake? Let Dr. Aubrey Baudean DDS know at your next checkup. We’d love to share your success story with other patients!