Dehydration Prevention Tips: Water, an Essential Nutrient! - Paula Owens

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Dehydration Prevention Tips: Water, an Essential Nutrient!

Dehydration Prevention Tips - Paula Owens, MS Holistic Nutritionist and Functional Health Practitioner

Dehydration is one of the most common nutrient deficiencies! Water is a vital, essential nutrient for healing, detoxification, weight loss, performance, brain function and optimal health. Water is approximately 75% of the body, and every cell is regulated, monitored and dependent on an efficient flow of water.

Most Americans suffer from some degree of dehydration, and have no idea that dehydration is the root cause of their aches and pains, headaches, constipation, dizziness, fatigue and dry skin. Infants, children and the elderly are especially vulnerable dehydration and do not drink enough water.

Stay Hydrated! Health Benefits of Drinking Water

  • Lowers high blood pressure and reduces cholesterolPrevent Dehydration! Drink Water
  • Aids in fat loss and boosts metabolism
  • Gland and hormone function improves
  • Eliminates waste and flushes out toxins
  • Key nutrient for brain function
  • Regulates body temperature
  • Moisturizes the skin
  • Reduces the appearance of wrinkles
  • Transport nutrients to cells
  • The liver breaks down and releases more fat
  • Lowers cortisol and other stress hormones
  • Lubricates the spine, bones, joints and muscles
  • Stimulates digestion when consumed before meals (never drink water during mealtime)
  • Rids the body of excess sodium, which results in less fluid retention

The only time you don’t want to drink water is during mealtime because it dilutes your body’s production of hydrochloric acid, which is required for optimal digestion.

Common Causes of Dehydration

  • Not drinking enough water
  • Chronic stress, depleted adrenals and adrenal dysfunction
  • Aging (water content is higher in men than in women and declines in both with age. Older adults lose about 85-90 oz. of water per day.)
  • Increased output of urine due to a hormone deficiency, high blood sugar, diabetes or kidney disease
  • Climate. Prolonged heat exposure. Humidity
  • Sickness, fever, vomiting or diarrhea
  • Excessive sweating
  • Physical activity
  • Low calorie diets and low carb, high protein diets
  • Flying (an air traveler can lose approximately 50-60 oz. of water during a three-hour flight)
  • Menstrual cycles
  • Recovering from burns
  • OTC and prescription medication use
  • Drinking too much alcohol

Are you dehydrated? Dehydration is linked to . . .

   • Muscle cramps, aches & pains • Dizziness • Hypertension, high cholesterol
   • Fatigue and weakness • Constipation • Poor concentration
   • Joint pain, back pain • Angina • Asthma
   • Rapid heart beat (tachycardia) • Dry skin, cracked lips • Dark urine with a strong odor
   • Decreased performance • Increased cortisol • Cravings, weight loss resistance
   • Accelerated aging, wrinkles
• Headaches • Confusion, hallucinations
   • Kidney stones • Mood changes • Urinary tract infections
   • Short-term memory loss • Toxic build-up • Lowered immune function

The solution to pollution is dilution! Drink more water!

Normal urine color should be clear to light yellow or similar to the color of lemon juice. Urine can be more yellow if taking vitamins, specifically B vitamins and certain medications. Urine that is a dark yellow (the color of apple juice) and lower volume output (than usual for you) are indicators of dehydration.

Dehydration Prevention Tips

Upon rising, sip on a cup of water with the juice from a fresh lemon or lime. Add a pinch of Celtic sea salt. Repeat again before meals.

Those who drink two cups of water before each meal experience great weight loss — an average of 5 pounds more weight is lost compared to those who did not drink water!

Drink water throughout the day in between meals. Carry water with you when driving, at your desk, during travel and especially when exercising.

The only time you do not want to drink water is during mealtime because it dilutes the natural production of stomach acid.

How much water should you drink to stay hydrated? The amount of water we each need depends on our body size, metabolism, the weather, the food we eat, and our activity levels. Here’s a formula to help you determine the number of ounces of water to consume daily. Take your body weight and multiply by .7. This provides you with the number of ounces of water for you specifically to consume every day.

Helpful Tip! At the start of your day, fill a container with the number of ounces of water you’re to consume for the day. Finish the water from the container before 6pm.

Chemicals in your water

Water quality is vital! Consider installing a reverse osmosis water filtration system in your kitchen and shower to filter the water from impurities such as fluoride, chlorine, lead and other heavy metals, contaminants, and chemicals.

Add a pinch of unprocessed sea salt to your drinking water to replenish the adrenals, increase mineral intake and create an alkaline environment.

Filtering the water in your home is a necessity (not an option or a luxury). Install a water filter in your home, especially for the water you drink, cook with and shower in to minimize exposure to neurotoxic and endocrine-disrupting fluoride, chlorine, toxic metals, microbes, industrial pollutants, pharmaceuticals and other harmful chemicals. You absorb 3x more chemicals through your skin than when consumed orally. Even if you’re not taking any prescription drugs, they’re in the water supply (chemo drugs, oral contraceptives, hormones, hypertension meds and many others)!

Nutrient boosters to add to water

  • Unprocessed sea salt (increases minerals, nourishes the adrenals and helps with absorption)
  • Lemon or lime slices
  • Cucumber slices
  • Fresh mint, dill or basil
  • Ginger root
  • Berries, cherries or cranberries

Monitor Intake of Other Fluids

  • Caffeinated beverages. A couple of cups of coffee is perfectly fine as long as your body is able to metabolize it. Just make sure it’s organic coffee to reap the health benefits of coffee.
  • Avoid all soda, including diet soda. This one’s a no-brainer.
  • Avoid commercial fruit juices, sport drinks and energy drinks. The majority of these beverages are liquid sugar containing excessive amounts of sugar that spike insulin, are calorically-dense, void of fiber, and an ingredient list full of chemicals, artificial sweeteners, fructose, and artificial colorings — all which are harmful.
  • Alcohol. Most alcohol is made from corn or wheat and spells trouble for those with hidden food sensitivities. In excess, alcohol is estrogenic adding to hormonal disruption, bloating, cravings, and overindulgence negatively alters mood, skin, sleep, microbiome, motivation and waistline.

Tips to Keep in Mind about Water

  1. Water is essential to most bodily functions.
  2. The body has no way to store water and needs fresh supplies every day.
  3. Dehydration is life threatening to an infant and requires urgent medical attention.
  4. Adult women should consume approximately 8-10 cups and adult men about 10-12 cups of fluids a day to prevent dehydration.
  5. The regulation of water balance is essential for the maintenance of mental and physical health, performance, healthy brain function and weight loss.

BPA, a hormone disrupting chemical

Instead of plastic water bottles, switch to glass or other eco-friendly materials to avoid BPA and other toxic chemicals. Ten popular U.S. bottled water brands contain mixtures of 38 different pollutants, including bacteria, fertilizer, Tylenol and industrial chemicals, some at levels no better than tap water, according to lab tests conducted by the Environmental Working Group (EWG).

It’s especially important to avoid drinking water that has been in sun-heated plastic containers or drinking from plastic containers that have been left in a hot vehicle or warehouse.

The bottle water industry has also contributed to one of the biggest environmental problems facing the world today. Only one-fifth of the bottles produced by the industry are recycled. The remaining four-fifths pile up at landfills, litter our neighborhoods and foul our oceans. 

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