About two-thirds (75%) of the human body is made up of fluids/water, and it is extremely vital for proper bodily function. Water helps transport nutrients to and from cells and eliminates waste products out of cells, thereby keeping cells healthy and toxin-free. It is also essential for all digestive, absorption, circulatory and excretory functions, as well as assimilating water-soluble vitamins and also helps maintain proper body temperature.
Apart from these, water also helps with fat loss. This is because when the body is even remotely dehydrated, it slows down the body’s metabolism process which then impairs the cells ability to metabolize glucose. The blood sugar delivered to the cells that are supposed to be utilised as energy is left unused which is then stored as fat instead.
Since water plays such an important role in the functioning of the body, healthcare professionals all over the world are recommending a daily intake of at least three to four litres of water. However, with hectic schedules and the modern fast-paced lifestyle, we often forget to drink water and hydrate our body. And while this may seem common and not serious, it could prove to be dangerous, especially when deadly contagious infections and viruses are rampant. And as our nation is currently battling against this deadly disease, it is extremely important to stay on top of our health. Proper hydration is necessary for healthy living and is particularly important in our current situation.
Benefits of Hydration against Contagious Viral Infection
Since our body is made up of 75% water, staying hydrated and re-hydrating is extremely important. The amount of water required to keep the body hydrated has increased from the typical 8 glasses per day to 11 glasses of water (2.7 litres) for women and 16 glasses (3.7 litres) of water for average men.
Symptoms of viral infections such as fever, cold and cough can wreak havoc on the body. It robs us of our vital nutrients, especially if fluids and healthy foods are not consumed while sick. According to the American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (ASPEN), an average adult with a fever of 102 degree or higher, loses about 900ml of body fluid every 24 hours due to sweating, and another extra 90 ml of fluid from coughing and heavy breathing. This loss of bodily fluid may further worsen due to nausea, vomiting or diarrhoea and inadequate water consumption due to poor appetite. In cases such as these, respiratory secretions may thicken and may thicken and may be difficult to clear from the lungs, which can further lead to pneumonia
Water is present in every cell of our body. It is utilized by our major organs, such as the kidneys, the liver, the heart and the brain as well. That is why staying hydrated is vital for proper bodily functions. And as mentioned before, water is also crucial for maintaining the body’s core temperature, and dehydration can worsen an existing fever. Even mild dehydration can cause the body temperature to rise. Besides, staying hydrated also promotes and maintains healthy membranes. When we sneeze, cough and even when breathing, the membranes in our mouth and nose eliminate bacteria. Staying hydrated maintains moisture which can help heal the broken membranes so additional infectious organisms cannot enter the body.
Warm Water for Colds & Coughs
Regular consumption of warm water has its own benefits and one being it is an excellent immunity booster for health. It fulfils all the needs to overcome the harshness of seasonal change and in staying fit and healthy. For the body to function properly, it needs an optimal balance of electrolytes, which is obtained from water.
When it comes to boiling water, its purpose is to kill and inactivate the viruses, bacteria and other organisms that can cause harm to the body. It helps maintain the right balance of electrolyte and help eliminate the toxins present in the body. Warm water is great for seasonal flu, colds and coughs and is extremely helpful in soothing the chest when it comes to viral infections.
Consuming the Right Fluids
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, when it comes to hydration, it does not have to necessarily come from regular water. Oral electrolyte solutions like ORS which contains a balance of electrolytes, sodium and sugar are an excellent option. Additionally, hydration can also come in the form of soups, coffee, tea and even from fruits and vegetables, such as watermelon, tomatoes, and lettuce.
However, caffeinated drinks such as coffee may cause some people to urinate more frequently than usual. Therefore, it is best to limit or avoid it altogether. Likewise, certain energy drinks contain a large amount of caffeine in them and they also usually contain ingredients such as ginseng, taurine or guarana that can overstimulate you. Moreover, most of these drinks are usually high in added sugar which can actually suppress thirst and add extra calories to your diet. Hence it is important to be mindful of these drinks. According to doctors, children and teens should not have energy drinks.
Herbal teas prove to be a great way to keep the body hydrated apart from regular water. They are free of caffeine and sugar which makes them an excellent option as far as hydration is concerned. Preserva’s Immune Boosting Tea and Daily Boost Tea are the ideal candidates when it comes to boosting immunity and improving respiratory health while hydrating the body to the max!
Here are some simple tips to help you stay hydrated all throughout the day:
- Keep a bottle of water with you wherever you go. Carry a reusable water bottle to be more pocket and eco-friendly.
- Try adding a slice of lemon to spice up your regular water.
- Thirst is often confused with hunger so try drinking water next time you feel hungry. True hunger will not be satisfied by drinking water.
- Make a schedule to drink water. This can be helpful if you are someone having trouble remembering to drink water. Drink water when you wake up, at breakfast, at lunch, and at dinner, and when you go to bed.
In this day and age, and keeping in mind our current dire situation, it is of utmost importance for everyone to remain on top of our health and perform our parts in helping India fight against deadly diseases. At a time when health is of utmost priority, all of us must remind ourselves to stay active, safe, and hydrated.