Every single cellular reaction in the body takes place in water. Signs of dehydration include fatigue, constipation, dry skin, headaches and even kidney stones. However, despite the well-known benefits
of adequate hydration, water often falls to the bottom of our priority list. In the clinic, when I conduct food diary analysis, I often observe suboptimal water intake.
Read on for some tips on how to stay hydrated and healthy.
General guidance is to drink at least two litres of water a day. You may need to drink more if you do regular exercise, if the central heating is cranked up or if it’s a summer’s day. Body composition may also increase your water requirement.
Non-caffeinated herbal teas contribute to your water count. Buy a range of herbal teas to add variety to your hydration efforts. Herbal teas also have the added benefit of being a source of antioxidants.
Furthermore, many herbal teas offer a myriad of benefits for digestion, sleep, and relaxation.
Loose-leaf herbal tea is a ritual and a treat. However, for a quick herbal tea on a weekday, I love the organic Pukka Tea range. The Three Mint tea and Lemon, Ginger and Manuka Honey tea are my
everyday favourites. I often recommend their Peppermint & Licorice tea to clients who like to eat something sweet after dinner as it is deliciously sweet and can often satisfy that craving.
If you use large glasses for water, you will be more likely to drink more throughout the day. This sounds ridiculously simple, but it helps! If you use small glasses, you will end up drinking much less. Try it and
see for yourself.
Tomatoes, celery, peppers, asparagus, mushrooms, spinach and broccoli all contain more than 90% water-by-weight. Include a variety of these vegetables in your diet and reap the benefits of hydration.
Upon waking, our bodies are already in a state of mild dehydration. Coffee and caffeinated
tea further dehydrate the body. Always have a glass of water before drinking your first coffee
or tea of the day. I like to keep a large glass of water on my bedside table and drink it before
getting out of bed. This makes it easy and sets me up for success in the day!
The reason for this is two-fold. Firstly, plastic leaches chemicals into water. These
chemicals end up in our body. For women, this is particularly bad news as these chemicals
can mimic oestrogen. We want to avoid oestrogen build-up in the body, as this can
contribute to painful periods, mood concerns and even some oestrogen-related cancers.
Secondly, we all know that plastic bottles are awful for the environment. There is no excuse
to still be purchasing plastic-bottled water in 2022! Use a water filter, of which you can buy
Most squash contains large amounts of added sugar. Excess sugar can cause
inflammation in the body, negatively impact gut health, cause weight gain, low energy and
anxiety. In addition, many squash products contain artificial sweeteners. We should also
avoid these as they pose a variety of concerns including inflammation in the gut and
exacerbation of sugary cravings.
Use fruit and herbs to naturally flavour water. I like to add a squeeze and a couple of slices
of orange with some sprigs of thyme. Delicious!
Sophie Trotman DipION mBANT CNHC, a Registered Nutritional Therapist.
Sophie sees clients for virtual 1:1 consults and does workplace wellness talks.