Billions of people, worldwide, live in chronic hunger with abysmal water resources. However, while it is lack of water that affects overall health in poverty-stricken areas, it is general unawareness about water's importance to health that affects health among metro dwellers.
Today we have with us Bangalore-based, registered dietitian and Wellness Consultant, Sheela Krishnaswamy, who will unearth the top 5 must-know facts about how water affects our health.
Understanding the ideal amount of water one should be drinking on a daily basis. There is no 'ideal' amount or fixed quantity of water which would suit everyone for daily consumption. But as a guideline, 30 ml of water per kg body weight should suffice for a normal healthy adult. Other influencing factors for amount of water intake are climate, illness, age, thirst, physical activity, etc. Sportspersons require a lot more hydration than non-sportspersons.
Overall maintenance: Water helps us in multiple ways and is a part of the cells in the body. Apart from quenching thirst, it regulates body temperature, helps to flush out waste products from the kidneys, keeps mucous membranes moist, helps in digestion, lubricates joints, maintains the viscosity of blood, and moisturises the skin.
Water helps in prevention of diseases. Water helps to prevent constipation by softening the stools and making it easy to evacuate the bowels. It helps to prevent urinary tract infection. It prevents premature wrinkling of skin by keeping the skin moist. It helps to prevent frequent infections and allergies by keeping the mucous membranes of the nose, throat, eyes, etc moist. Adequate water intake prevents dehydration and its effects.
Importance of getting daily requirement of water content through your food. Water can be taken plain in the required quantity or can be combined with fluids to maintain the hydration levels in the body. Nourishing fluids would include beverages like buttermilk, fresh lime juice, fresh fruit juice, tender coconut water, plain milk, clear soup. Some of the vegetables and fruits are high in water content and their intake helps in boosting the hydration in the body, especially in the hot summer months. Some examples are cucumber, ash gourd, watermelon, tomato and celery.
Water and weight loss. Drinking water right before a meal aids in suppressing appetite to some extent, thus, making one eat less. However, this does not contribute to weight loss directly. Weight loss takes effort and involves balanced food intake, physical activity, exercise, and so on. As far as water is concerned it has no calories and creates a false feel of fullness and might just contribute to weight loss indirectly.
The biggest take-home here is that water helps promote healthy metabolism, which in turn affects how our bodies handle energy production and fat storage. So get healthy, and drink up today!