Water is arguably the most important substance for our bodies, since hydration is crucial for survival, as well as good physical and mental health. Nonetheless, many people around the world simply don’t drink enough water, and this can lead to significant problems when they don’t stay hydrated.
According to the Borgen Project, Saudi Arabia is one of the most water-scarce nations in the world. While 97% of people in Saudi Arabia have access to clean water, 3% do not. In many cases, however, a lack of access isn’t the main cause.
Many people point to a busy schedule or a dislike of plain water’s taste as the true reason why they’re under-hydrated. So, what can be done to overcome this?
Why Staying Hydrated Matters
Hydration is important for your body and mind. According to professionals at Harvard University, staying properly hydrated is responsible for:
- Regulating your body’s internal temperature
- Keeping joints lubricated
- Preventing infections
- Keeping your organs functioning properly
- Ensuring blood is the proper thickness and consistency
- Aiding in the delivery of nutrients to the cells
- Maintaining cognitive capabilities
- Stabilizing mood
- Maintaining good sleep quality
Experts recommend drinking between 11-16 cups of water a day (for adults) because of this. If we become dehydrated, it can impact our:
If you frequently have problems staying hydrated, these tips will help you make a positive change in your life.
Habits That Lead To Drinking More Water
While water is a very plain drink, it’s difficult to beat when it comes to hydration. It’s calorie-free and often full of minerals (especially if you drink spring water), which is important for promoting healthy bones, skin, hair, and organs.
If you suffer from recurring headaches, too, drinking more water could be helpful. While some headaches are caused by stress or environmental factors, many headaches are a result of dehydration.
If you want to drink more water, try these techniques:
- Start your day with a glass of water.
- Carry a refillable water bottle with you wherever you go.
- Set an achievable water goal and stick to it.
- Track your progress.
- Make drinking water a part of your routine (drink a glass of water when you brush your teeth or after you go to the bathroom, for example).
- Drink a glass of water with each meal.
These approaches can help you to get more water into your diet. But what if you don’t like water?
Many people simply dislike the taste of plain water. While you can force yourself to drink it, this will be hard to stick to.
6 Tips To Help You Stay Hydrated (Without Drinking Plain Water)
A factor that makes it difficult to stay hydrated is overconsumption of sugary, caffeine-laden drinks. While coffee, tea, sodas, and fruit juices are mostly water, they also have diuretic ingredients, such as sugar and caffeine.
These ingredients increase the production of urine and pull water from the body in order to process them. As such, they can actually dehydrate us over time.
If you’re not a fan of plain water, these six tips will help you to get and stay hydrated:
1. Add Sugar Free Flavors To Your Water
If plain water isn’t for you, use sugar-free flavorings or infuse your water with fruits like lemon to get a kick of flavor, alongside the hydrating benefits of water.
For example, there are different kinds of water bottles with central or bottom reservoirs that can hold pieces of fruit. These allow you to infuse water, while keeping the fruit away from the straw or outlet.
Although fruits contain some sugar, it’s not enough to create the diuretic effect that carbonated or sugar-packed drinks can lead to.
Drinking one or two bottles of infused water a day will go a long way toward keeping you hydrated.
2. Start Your Day With Oatmeal
Oatmeal and porridge can be fantastic for increasing hydration. As well as being a hearty, filling meal, oats soak up lots of moisture as they cook. This moisture, whether it’s water or milk, is then released into your body as you digest the oatmeal or porridge.
You can also add some fresh fruit on top of your oatmeal to get even more water in your morning meal, alongside extra vitamins and minerals.
3. Drink More Milk
Believe it or not, research has found that milk can be just as hydrating as water. In fact, it could even be more hydrating. This is great news, because milk is also packed with protein, calcium, and vitamins that are essential for keeping the body healthy.
A glass of milk first thing in the morning and last thing at night will help you stay hydrated and give you the nutrients required to feel your best.
4. Drink Vegetable And Fruit Smoothies
While fruit smoothies are packed with sugar, mixing fruit and vegetables with water in a smoothie can be delicious. It also lowers the overall sugar content.
For example, a smoothie made from crushed ice, coconut water, ginger, banana, mango, and baby kale and spinach leaves will be packed with goodness. It’s delicious and will help you stay hydrated.
5. Have Soup For Lunch
Soup can be a hearty, filling lunch, but it also has the capability to hydrate you as you eat. Because soup is primarily made of water, it helps you meet your hydration requirements quickly.
Better yet, if your soup is packed with vegetables, you will also get a boost of minerals and vitamins. Just remember not to over-salt your soup, as salt is a diuretic ingredient that will be counterproductive.
6. Pack Your Plate With Vegetables
Fruit and vegetables are essential for good health because of the nutrients they contain – but they are also packed with moisture. Eating fresh vegetables and fruits is a great way to get a boost of hydration, but if you’re not a fan of raw vegetables, adding lots of cooked vegetables to your evening meal will help you to stay hydrated (especially if they are boiled).
Apply these simple tips to your daily routine and you will notice a difference very quickly. As you become more hydrated, more consistently, you may notice that your skin texture improves, your nails are in better condition, you are less susceptible to headaches and illnesses – and you may even sleep better. All because of a little extra water.