I'm going to try adding this year instead of subtracting. I'm adding water. (Or, if you want to get Lenten about it, I'm giving up not drinking enough agua.) The logical part of me understands how much my cells need water to function optimally, but the foodie/wino part of me thinks water is dreadfully boring compared to, say, lattes and wine.
But a quick reminder of water's health benefits, and I'm recommitting to water:
- Lose weight: Drinking water helps you lose weight because it flushes down the by-products of fat breakdown. Drinking water reduces hunger by filling you up. Plus, water has zero calories.
- Natural Remedy for Headache: Helps relieve headache and back pains due to dehydration. Although many reasons contribute to headaches, dehydration is the most common one.
- Look Younger with Healthier Skin: You’ll look younger when your skin is properly hydrated. Water helps to replenish skin tissues, moisturizes skin and increases skin elasticity.
- Better Productivity at Work: Your brain is mostly made up of water, thus drinking water helps your brain cells function optimally; you will be more alert and more focused.
- Better Exercise: Drinking water regulates your body temperature. That means you’ll feel more energetic when doing exercises. Water also helps to fuel your muscle tissue.
- Helps in Digestion and Constipation: Drinking water raises your metabolism because it helps in digestion. Fiber and water goes hand in hand so that you can have your daily bowel movement.
- Fewer Cramps and Sprains: Proper hydration helps keep your joints and muscles lubricated, so you’ll less likely get cramps and sprains.
- Less Likely to Get Sick: Drinking plenty of water helps fight against flu and other ailments like kidney stones and heart attack. Water with lemon is used for ailments like respiratory disease, intestinal problems, rheumatism and arthritis.
- Relieves Fatigue: Water is used by the body to help flush out toxins and waste products from the body. If your body lacks water, your heart, for instance, needs to work harder to pump out the oxygenated blood to all cells, so are the rest of the vital organs, your organs will be exhausted and so will you.
- Good Mood: Your body feels good and so you feel happy. It's simple.
- Reduce the Risk of Cancer: Related to the digestive system, some studies show that drinking a healthy amount of water may reduce the risks of bladder cancer and colon cancer. Water dilutes the concentration of cancer-causing agents in the urine and shortens the time in which they are in contact with bladder lining.
How much water? A lot. Take your weight, divide that by 2, and that number is how many ounces you should be drinking a day! (For a non-water fan like me, I'm going to fill up my water bottle twice a day, and not worry too much about the math. There is already enough guilt in this world.)
I consider myself a spiritual person, but not a deeply religious person. I find this exercise in self-improvement accessible and meaningful, which in turn helps create compassion for the institution of religion. I intend to meditate on this a lot this month, as I will have ample opportunities during my many bathroom breaks. Happy Lent!
What are you adding or subtracting this month?