If you are like most people, you don’t drink enough water on a daily basis. Researchers today believe it is essential to drink at least 2 – 2.5 litres of water per day if you are going to perform at your best. As summer is approaching it is important, especially if you are in a hot and humid climate (like me) that we drink at least 2 litres a day and more if we are exercising or working outdoors.
Unfortunately most people don’t follow this simple guideline for good health. The result is that over 90 % of people do not digest their foods efficiently; they retain too much fat (studies have shown that drinking more water can lead to fat loss) and expose themselves to a build up of toxins.
Many experts now agree that a major contributor to illness is inadequate hydration of the body along with poor waste elimination. By increasing your hydration level water has been shown to increase your body’s ability to transport vital nutrients to cells and flush unwanted wastes out of the system. This combined effect maybe the single most important thing you can do to improve the efficiency of your body, feel better and get you on a long term path to optimal health.
Whether you are seeking to improve your general health, increase energy, lose weight or eliminate a specific disorder, you will need to hydrate your body properly in order to get the best results in the shortest time. For optimum results drink a minimum of 1 to 1.5 glasses of filtered water 30 minutes before each meal; at least 2 glasses between each meal; but at least 30 minutes after the last meal. It is best not to drink to much with meals as this dilutes important digestive enzymes, if you need to have a drink whilst you are eating only have a small amount of room temperature water, no refrigerated drinks.
If you are not accustomed to drinking this much water, it will take several weeks for your body to adjust to the extra water consumption and you may have to urinate more frequently but this will normalise in a few weeks; if increased urination persists you may need to supplement with magnesium and potassium for a little while. If you drink a lot of tea, coffee or other caffeinated drinks these will also dehydrate the body and decrease your magnesium, potassium and other vitamin levels, so drink caffeine containing drinks in moderation, 1-2 per day. Different people have different requirements for example if you are an outdoor worker you will require a special hydration formula like Endura to help maintain your energy levels
You may also have more bowel movements in a day; this is a positive sign that your body is getting rid of unwanted wastes and toxins. This improved waste elimination will continue as long as you continue to drink 2 -2.5 litres of filtered water per day
Believe it or not when you start to drink filtered water in the prescribed quantities, you may actually find yourself feeling thirsty. If you do, drink additional water until the thirst dissipates, your body is adjusting to what it naturally prefers
As you continue to drink more water you may also experience a subtle increase in energy as well as mental alertness, a bit like when you water a droopy plant…it starts to come alive again
Michael is head consultant at Planet Naturopath - Functional Medicine and Nutrition Solutions. As Seen