This week’s 52 Week Be Better Challenge is to drink the proper amount of water for your body using a reusable water bottle. How much water do you need to stay properly hydrated depends on your height and weight, your activity level, and the climate where you live. Aim to drink one-half to one ounce of water daily for every pound that you weigh. If you weigh 140 pounds, for example, look to drink 70-140 ounces of water each day. If you are active and live somewhere warm, aim for the higher end of your calculated range. Before you get started use this hydration calculator to figure out how much water you should be drinking.
The benefits of staying hydrated are endless: enhanced mood; greater concentration, memory and alertness; energized muscles; better digestion and kidney function; clearer skin; congestion relief; improved cardiovascular health; and the list goes on. Even better is the fact that you can start reaping all of these benefits now – no need to stop what you’re doing and run to the grocery store for this “super food.” Grab a glass (or a reusable bottle if you’re on the go), fill it to the top with filtered water, and you’re all set. By the end of the day, you just might impress yourself knowing how many times you refilled it!
Keep in mind, though, that your body can only metabolize 12 ounces of water at a time, so it’s best to spread out your consumption over the course of a day. To stay hydrated all day long, experts recommend drinking a glass of water:
When you wake up – to rid your body of toxins, and help you feel more energized and ready to take on the day
Before you eat – to reduce overeating, and activate digestive enzymes and bile production
Before and after you exercise – to replace what you lost through sweat, and to keep your muscles hydrated and energized
Before you go to bed – to help with detoxification, and reduce your risk of stroke or heart attack
As part of this week’s challenge, commit to using a reusable water bottle to reduce waste. According to reuseit.com, 480,000 tons of plastic bottles and jars were thrown away in one year (2008). This is a problem because “ten percent of the plastic produced every year worldwide winds up in the ocean. 70% of which finds its way to the ocean floor, where it will likely never degrade.”
Here is a great list of reusable water bottles by Real Simple. One that is not on the list is the new and trending Hyrdo Flask, which keeps ice water cold for three days and water hot for 24 hours.
-While at work, get a 20-ounce cup of ice and keep filling it from the office water cooler. The key is drinking with a straw — you take bigger gulps and drink much more.
-Freeze little bits of peeled lemons, limes, and oranges, and use them in place of ice cubes. It’s refreshing and helps get in a serving or two of fruit.
-Substitute a cup of hot water with a drop of honey or lemon for tea or coffee.
-When you have juice (apple, grape or orange), fill half the glass with water.
Drink water this week!
Cheers, and happy hydrating!