Tag Archives: Hydration

Benefits of Drinking Water

Our bodies are made up of around 60% water. Water makes up about 90% of the blood. We cannot survive without water. As we age our cells are not able to absorb water well. This is due to all the toxins that a person absorbs over the years from their diet, environment and chemicals that can be found in water like fluoride, chlorine and pesticides. Hormonal residues from the pill can also be found in water. This is why it is important  to drink good quality water as the better the quality the better it will be absorbed by the cells leading to good hydration. You can tell by how well hydrated you are by the colour of your urine. If it is dark it means you need to drink more. Your urine should be a light pale colour. We lose around 3 litres of water a day. We lose water every day through breathing, urine, stools and sweating, especially during strenuous exercise. In the warmer weather we tend to drink more as we tend to sweat more. In winter we tend to want to drink less as we assume that as it is cold we do not need to drink as much. We actually need to be well hydrated all year round. You should aim to drink 1.5 – 2 litres of water a day. Water is vital for your cells, tissues, blood, lymph and glandular secretions.

Water flushes out toxins

By drinking more water the body is able to flush out all the toxins. In order for the kidneys to function properly it is important that the tubules do not become clogged up or damaged. The liver is the major organ of detoxification. If we are not well hydrated the liver will not be able to get rid of all the toxins and you will become toxic leading to feeling unwell with headaches, feeling bloated and having water retention and cellulite build up.

Increase fruit and vegetables in your diet

By eating 4 pieces of fruit and having 4 portions of vegetables on a daily basis is a litre of water. Foods high in water are: Tomatoes, melons, lettuce, carrots and broccoli. In general all fruit and vegetables are good to eat.

Improves mental function

If you deprive the body of water you will feel tired with no energy. Your mental function will be impaired. You will experience headaches or wake up with a clouded head as though you are hung over. Starving the brain of water creates mental confusion,  lack of memory and concentration.

Improves physical activity

When you exercise you lose a large amount of water especially if you do strenuous  exercise and sweat a lot. If the muscles are not well hydrated you will  not be able to perform your best as you will be too tired to have a good workout. In order to get the most out of your workout you need to drink water before, during and after exercise.

Improves constipation

If you are not drinking enough water faeces will become dry and hard causing constipation. By being well hydrated you will have better bowel movements.

Keeps joints lubricated

By not drinking enough water your joints will become stiff and painful. Most people associate joint pain with arthritis but sometimes all you have to do is actually drink more water and the joints become less stiff, less painful.

Keeps  your blood fluid

Water makes up approximately 90% of your blood. If you do not drink enough water then your blood risks becoming thick. If blood is too thick you run the risk of blood clots and heart disease.

Regulates body temperature and transports nutrients

Water helps limit changes in your body temperature when you are exposed to a warm or cold environment. When you are hot the body will release sweat and the evaporation of the water from the surface of the skin will cool the body. Water is the main transporter of nutrients throughout the body.

Is good for the skin

If the cells are deprived of water they will shrink and become dry. Lack of hydration will make the skin dry and wrinkles more prominent.

Alcohol and caffeine

These substances dehydrate the body enormously so consumption should be moderate and plenty of water should be consumed when drinking alcohol or beverages that contain caffeine.

Tips on how to drink more water

Always carry a bottle of water with you everywhere you go and sip on it through out the day. It is best to sip on water slowly than drinking it all at once.

Add lemon, cucumber, strawberries etc to your water to improve the taste.

Increase your fruit and vegetable intake.

 

 

 

 

 

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5 Tips to Stay Safe and Healthy in the Summer Heat

Summer is finally here and it is a time when everyone is happy to enjoy the hot and sunny weather especially since it does not happen very often in the  UK. However it is impotant to enjoy the warm weather safely especially since there is a heatwave all across Europe at the moment. For the vulnerable like the elderly, babies, children and people suffering from chronic disease it is very important to stay safe. Here below are some useful tips.

Symptoms Related to Heat Exposure and Sunstroke

Dizziness

nausea

fatigue

headaches

feeling faint

elevated heart beat

muscle cramps

heavy sweating

decrease in blood pressure

 

Stay Hydrated

it is so important to drink plenty of water during the day. Sip it slowly through out the day with some lemon. Do not wait  until you are dehydrated to drink. It is important that parents keep children well hydrated. Avoid alcohol, caffeine and fizzy drinks as these will make you dehydrated. The best drink is water. You can make your own detox water with fresh fruit . You should aim to drink 2 liters of water a day.  Eat cooling foods that are water based like mango, watermelon, celery, tomatoes and cucumber.

Electrolytes

You need to replace electrolytes. Coconut water is a high source of potassium and is high in vitamin c which is good in fighting against cell damage. Bananas are also rich in potassium and makes a great recovery snack. Potassium helps to restore and regulate electrolyte balance. Magnesium is essential for nerve and muscle function. Good food sources are: nuts, seeds and green leafy vegetables. There is a great supplement in a powder form called Ultra Muscleze by a company called Nutri. Put one teaspoon in a bottle of water and sip it through out the day. Magnesium is also known as nature’s tranquilizer.

Suncreams

We all love to tan especially if we hardly see the sun. it is important though that you do not burn as burning increases your chance of skin cancer. So be sensible and always wear sunscreen. You do not want to turn into a lobster and peel or get blisters. The sun today is fierce. Make sure babies and children are protected with sun hats and creams.

Avoid the Hottest Time of the Day

Be sensible and do not expose yourself during the hottest periods of the day which is from 11am – 3pm. Stay in the shade during these times or walk around with an umbrella and wear a hat. Do not lock children, babies or animals in cars. This is extremely dangerous and can lead to death.

Wear Loose Clothing and Wet Yourself Regularly

Make sure you wear loose comfortable clothing at all times that allows the skin to breathe. Do not wear tight clothing that constricts circulation. Keep the skin and hair constantly cool and wet by using a sponge, cold pack or a flannel to wet your wrists, armpits and neck.

 

 

 

 

running

Healthy Eating For Runners

With the London Marathon coming up I thought I would re post Healthy  Eating for Runners. Hope the tips below help you to achieve your optimum results.

If you want to achieve optimum performance you have to fuel your body with the right nutrients. I know so many runners who believe, because they consume a lot of calories (running is the best for weight loss) they can overload on unhealthy options. Feeding your body with the correct nutrients is vital for optimum peak performance. In order to have an abundance of energy and get the most out of your work out, a balanced diet composed of carbohydrates, proteins and fats are essential. Forget processed foods and ready-made meals, your diet should consist of fresh whole foods.

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are absolutely necessary for energy and endurance. It is important that the body stores excess glycogen in the liver and muscles. The higher the glycogen stores, the better your athletic performance. The lower your glycogen stores, the more your body will struggle with energy and endurance resulting in early fatigue. Glycogen is essential for any type of physical exertion How much carbs you need depends on your body mass and what type of running you intend to do. Long distance running and marathons will require more carbohydrates especially leading up to an event.

When I mention carbohydrates I am not referring to refined sugars such as white bread, white pasta, cakes, pies and processed foods, which have zero nutritional value. They supply that quick burst of energy by raising your blood sugar levels followed by a quick dip in energy. This is why complex carbohydrates are what you should be fueling your body. Complex Carbohydrates are slow releasing and do not raise blood sugar levels thus resulting in energy for longer periods of time. Good sources include: sweet potatoes, brown rice, porridge, stone ground wholemeal breads.

Protein

Protein is important for muscle repair and healing especially after an intense and long distance run. Good sources of protein are lean meats – please ensure you go for organic meats. You do not want to eat meat that has been injected with hormones and antibiotics. Tofu, lentils, beans, eggs and quinoa are also great sources of protein. Another is the superfood spirulina, which is a blue-green algae rich in protein, iron and B12.

Healthy fats

Your good omega 3 fats known as essential fatty acids act as an anti inflammatory by protecting your joints, ligaments and tendons. They are also good for brain function, cardiovascular health, endurance and stamina. Good sources include; wild salmon, sardines, mackerel, avocados, flax seeds, linseeds, pumpkin, chia and sunflower seeds.

Hydration

It is so important to drink water and stay hydrated. Lack of hydration will result in poor athletic performance. You should aim at drinking 1 1/2 – 2 litres of water a day. water is also vital in flushing out toxins from the body.

Recovery

Recovery after an intense workout is vital to replace fluid and nutrient loss. You need to replace electrolytes. Coconut water is a high source of potassium and is high in vitamin c which is good in fighting against cell damage. Bananas are also rich in potassium and makes a great recovery snack. Potassium helps to restore and regulate electrolyte balance. Magnesium is essential for nerve and muscle function. Good food sources are: nuts, seeds and green leafy vegetables. There is a great supplement in a powder form called Ultra Muscleze by a company called Nutri. Put one teaspoon in a bottle of water and sip it through out the day. Magnesium is also known as nature’s tranquilizer.

running

Healthy eating for runners

If you want to achieve optimum performance you have to fuel your body with the right nutrients. I know so many runners who believe, because they consume a lot of calories (running is the best for weight loss) they can overload on unhealthy options. Feeding your body with the correct nutrients is vital for optimum peak performance. In order to have an abundance of energy and get the most out of your work out, a balanced diet composed of carbohydrates, proteins and fats are essential. Forget processed foods and ready-made meals, your diet should consist of fresh whole foods.

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates are absolutely necessary for energy and endurance. It is important that the body stores excess glycogen in the liver and muscles. The higher the glycogen stores, the better your athletic performance. The lower your glycogen stores, the more your body will struggle with energy and endurance resulting in early fatigue.  Glycogen is essential for any type of physical exertion How much carbs you need depends on your body mass and what type of running you intend to do. Long distance running and marathons will require more carbohydrates especially leading up to an event.

When I mention carbohydrates I am not referring to refined sugars such as white bread, white pasta, cakes, pies and processed foods, which have zero nutritional value. They supply that quick burst of energy by raising your blood sugar levels followed by a quick dip in energy. This is why complex carbohydrates are what you should be fueling your body. Complex Carbohydrates are slow releasing and do not raise blood sugar levels thus resulting in energy for longer periods of time. Good sources include: sweet potatoes, brown rice, porridge, stone ground wholemeal breads.

Protein

Protein is important for muscle repair and healing especially after an intense and long distance run. Good sources of protein are lean meats – please ensure you go for organic meats. You do not want to eat meat that has been injected with hormones and antibiotics. Tofu, lentils, beans, eggs and quinoa are also great sources of protein. Another is the superfood spirulina, which is a blue-green algae rich in protein, iron and B12.

Healthy fats

Your good omega 3 fats known as essential fatty acids act as an anti inflammatory by protecting your joints, ligaments and tendons. They are also good for brain function, cardiovascular health, endurance and stamina. Good sources include; wild salmon, sardines, mackerel, avocados, flax seeds, linseeds, pumpkin and sunflower seeds.

Hydration

It is so important to drink water and stay hydrated. Lack of hydration will result in poor athletic performance. You should aim at drinking 1 1/2 – 2 litres of water a day. water is also vital in flushing out toxins from the body.

Recovery

Recovery after an intense workout is vital to replace fluid and nutrient loss. You need to replace electrolytes. Coconut water is a high source of potassium and is high in vitamin c which is good in fighting against cell damage. Bananas are also rich in potassium and makes a great recovery snack. Potassium helps to restore and regulate electrolyte balance. Magnesium is essential for nerve and muscle function. Good food sources are: nuts, seeds and green leafy vegetables. There is a great supplement in a powder form called Ultra Muscleze by a company called Nutri. Put one teaspoon in a bottle of water and sip it through out the day. Magnesium is also known as nature’s tranquilizer.