Healthy hydration is one of the foundational practices that contribute to optimal health. Unfortunately according to Dr. Zack Bush he believes all people in our country are dehydrated. I’m finding this to be true with my clients in my Physical Therapy and Holistic Health practice.
Approximately 70% of our body is water.
We have 30 billion cells, and two thirds of that hydration should be within the cells.
Our cells are small little generators that create energy and and that process also creates waste.
Water is a great detoxifier of those waste products by flushing them out of the cells to then be excreted in the urine and sweat. We need to be hydrated in order for that detoxification to take place.
The formula to stay properly hydrated is drinking half your body weight in ounces and some of those ounces need to include electrolytes.
Electrolytes helps get the water into the cells that provides fuel for the cells.
Electrolytes include; sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, just just to name a few.
Electrolytes are also found in some foods such as green leafy vegetables, beans, nuts, seeds and bananas.
Some people like to add a little bit of Himalayan sea salt to their water which is the mineral sodium.
Some of the signs of dehydration include:
feeling thirsty-If you feel thirsty, it's too late, you're already dehydrated, so don't wait to feel thirsty.
urine color-If your urine color is a dark yellow, that is a sign of dehydration, If you’re just drinking water, the urine will be clear. Basically it’s just washing out of the body and not getting into the cells, it should be slightly yellow.
One of the things you can do to test yourself to see if you're dehydrated is something called the Turgor skin test. Pinch the skin on the back of your hand. If your skin stays up in a little teepee shape it is an indicator that you are dehydrated.
Hydration and Exercise
It’s important when exercising to add more ounces of hydration and electrolytes especially when done during hot and cold environments. A lot of people feel that just because it's winter and it’s cold out they're not sweating. This is not the case, your body is burning calories to keep you warm so you are expending fluids and electrolytes. You have to stay hydrated just as much in the winter as you do in the summer.
Some of the benefits of staying well hydrated include:
hydrates the brain cells
provides elasticity for skin and connective tissue
assists in digestion
increases muscle response
reduces water retention
regulates body temperature
decreases blood pressure
oxygenates the blood.
When your body is oxygenated you’re more alkaline as opposed to acidic. This decreases disease in the body including cancers. So being oxygenated is very crucial to optimal health and eliminates the likelihood of disease and illness.
So that's my take on hydration. Again, I feel a very easy foundational principle that you can incorporate in your life, drinking more fluids, incorporating electrolytes in those fluids and drinking throughout your day and also eating those foods that have good sources of electrolytes.