Our body is made up of 60% water, so making sure that you are getting optimal amounts of water is essential for feeling good with optimal health and energy.
Water transports nutrients throughout the body, aids in digestion, regulates temperature, facilitates all pathways of detoxification, protects our joints, promotes healthy bowel movements, improves mental concentration and relieves fatigue.
So as you can see, water is pretty important. In the summer months, it’s even more important because the warmer weather places demand on our natural detoxification pathways due to increased body temperature and sweating. We are also often more active outdoors in summer, meaning we need to replace any water lost due to physical activity.
When helping someone on a wellness journey one of the first things I do is check if they are drinking enough water. Often they aren’t. If we all drank nothing but water, the health implications would be huge - even if we changed nothing else. Not only do you get the benefits of adequate hydration for bodily function, but you remove the processed sugars, chemicals and artificial sweeteners found in fizzy drink, juice, flavoured water and flavoured milk.
Making changes to consistently drink enough, quality, water is a step we can all implement easily.
How much water should you be drinking?
It is important to drink the right amount of water for you according to your weight. To work this out the formula is:
0.033 litres per kg of body weight, which roughly equates to the following amounts:
- 60 kg = 2 litres
- 75 kg = 2.5 litres
- 90 kg= 3 litres
- 105 kg = 3.5 litres
Only water and caffeine free herbal teas count towards your water intake. Tea and coffee does not count and can actually increase dehydration. If you drink one coffee it takes two glasses of water to break even as far as hydration goes.
So, what’s the best water to drink?
Most of our diets and lifestyles are slightly more acidic which can cause a whole bunch of different functions within the body to not work as well, like the digestive system and kidney function for example, so the best water to drink is pure, mineralised and slightly alkaline.
For most people we do not recommend drinking tap water as most tap water is going to have chlorine and fluoride, and both of these can be problematic.
Chlorine - Is basically a mild bleach that has a bad taste and has been put in water to kill any bad bacteria. When you start drinking a lot of it, it starts killing the bacteria in your mouth and gut.
Fluoride - Blocks iodine in the body. With 72 pathways of iodine in the body, anywhere iodine should be doing its job you’re going to get decreased function because of the fluoride.
How do you get pure water?
For most people we recommend a water filter that is going to take away the chlorine and reduce the fluoride, add minerals and slightly alkalize your water.
Is it OK to drink from plastic bottles?
The problem with drinking from plastic bottles is that the plastic leaches chemicals like pcb’s dioxins which are xeno-estrogenic and mimic estrogen in your body.
When you start getting too much estrogen it blocks the estrogen receptor sites, that then means your body essentially becomes insulin resistant, making it very difficult for your body to lose fat. When this happens you become estrogen dominant. You can read all about estrogen dominance here.
We recommend drinking water out or glass or stainless steel bottles.
Tips for increasing your water intake
- First thing in the morning have a big glass of water with lemon squeezed into it. The citric acid will also help jump-start your detoxification pathways.
- Invest in a quality glass or stainless steel water bottle and have it with you at all times. If you have a 750ml bottle, mentally calculate how many times you need to finish it for your body weight. For a 60kg person, you need just under 3 bottles. Once you’ve figured this out, you can space the water out through your day. Many clients at the BePure clinic have “water targets” they aim for by midday each day.
- If you prefer drinking hot drinks, caffeine free teas such as chamomile, peppermint, licorice or rooibos will all count towards your water intake. So does bone broth, which will also support your gut health.
This week’s challenge
For this week we’d like you to work out your own personal water requirement and commit to drinking that amount for 7 days. Use some of the tips above to get you started.
If you currently drink a lot less than you need, work up to your personal hydration needs. Aim for 2 L a day and build from there.