The importance of water

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After a walk to Flitwick Moor I began thinking about tonic water and drinking water for good health. I can’t imagine I would ever dare drink the water from the River Flit as I am sure it is full of various pollutions and I have not seen any springs to drink from during my walks.

Since studying at CNM I have gained a better understanding of why water is so essential to life and good health. After eliminating fizzy drinks from this house I found I was drinking more water but still not enough. So I have set myself a new goal to make drinking more water a habit in our household.

To do this I have to first gather my ammunition as Jim likes facts and I will need his support. Here are a few things I feel that are important to know which I have learnt through my studies and further research.

Firstly some stats……

75% of the body consists of water
95% of the brain consists of water
83% of blood is water

Then some reasons why our body needs water……

  • To transport nutrients and oxygen
  • To maintain body temperature
  • To aid digestion
  • To lubricate organs and joints
  • To eliminate toxins
  • To metabolise body fat
  • It is essential for our immune system
  • It is required by each cell in our body to function properly
  • It aids in the recovery of illness

How much water should you drink?

The common response to this is 8 glasses a day. A common formula used to calculate it is to divide your body weight in lbs. by 2. In fact it can vary with how heavy you are, how hot it is and how much you exercise. However if you feel thirsty and tired and/or your urine is dark it is a good indicator that you may not be drinking enough.

Actually a large number of us are dehydrated and this is known to reduce our physical and mental functions.

I used a simple water tracking app called waterlogged over this last week to track my own water intake. The results were not good and my consumption was far less than I expected.

So what can we do in order to increase are water intake as a family?

  • Keep a jug of water in the fridge and on the table at meal times
  • Eat foods such as melon, grapes and tomatoes which have a higher water content
  • Track what we drink
  • Add fruit to water such as lemons, limes and strawberries in order to make naturally flavoured waters
  • Drink herbal teas
  • Drink in the morning and before bed
  • Keep drinking water easily at hand
  • Associate water with good memories and good health
  • Make interesting water based drinks and interesting ice cubes
  • Make drinking water a habit

Megan and I made grape cubes today. They took less than 15mins to make and approximately two hours to freeze. The inspiration for these came from a book by Brian Preston-Campbell called Cool Waters.

We used grapes but blueberries, raspberries or strawberries would be great alternatives.

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To make these you will need a hand blender, 3 ice cube trays, a fine sieve, a measuring jug, 3 mugs of water and 250g of seedless red grapes.

For each ice cube you will need half a grape. Cut grapes and place in trays. Blend the remaining grapes with one mug of water. Then sieve the blended mix into measuring jug and add remaining 2 mugs of water and stir. Pour the grape water into the ice cube trays and freeze.

No more fizzy drinks for me.

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It’s been nagging at me for a while now. I remember my friends telling me a few years ago that it wasn’t good for me. I remember the reports way back in 2007 about the cancer risks of aspartame. I promised myself on New Year’s Eve that I was going to stop drinking it. I wonder what it is doing to my stomach if the kids use it to clean their coins with. Today I read a news report which yet again suggested that soft fizzy drinks are really not that good for you. This time the colouring was linked to cancer if you drank vast quantities. I wondered why I just didn’t give up today.

As I pondered on this I wondered how much of our weekly shopping bill went on fizzy drinks. Firstly I calculated the cost on a weekly basis and then on an annual basis. Then I calculated my share of the cost. I was quite frankly shocked by how much we were spending as a family on soft drinks. I drink quite a few cans a week so for me alone the cost was £300 annually. It seemed daft to me that although I don’t smoke and I rarely drink alcohol, I was still ready until today to spend £300 a year on something that most of us know is not healthy.

I have made the choice to finally put a stop to it and drink more water and now I need to encourage the family to stop by sharing the facts and figures with them.

When I was a child, fizzy drinks were occasional treats. I would like to see a move in that direction in our house for the benefits of our health and budgets.