Staying hydrated is crucial to maintaining overall health and wellness. Drinking water not only quenches thirst but also supports various bodily functions like digestion, nutrient absorption, detoxification, lubrication, and cushion joints, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Although it’s essential to drink enough water throughout the day, certain times can be especially beneficial for your health. Let’s dive into the seven best times to drink water.
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1. First Thing in the Morning
After a night’s sleep, your body is often in a state of dehydration. A glass of water first thing in the morning can help kickstart your metabolism and replenish the fluid loss that occurs during sleep. This practice can also aid digestion and cleanse your body, flushing out toxins effectively.
2. Before Every Meal
Drinking water 30 minutes before a meal can aid digestion. It prepares your stomach for the food that’s about to come, increasing your body’s ability to break down the food efficiently. Additionally, it can help control your appetite, as it fills your stomach and curbs overeating.
3. When You’re Hungry
Sometimes our bodies mistake thirst for hunger. So the next time you feel a hunger pang, try drinking a glass of water first. If you’re still hungry after that, go ahead and grab a snack.
4. Before and After a Workout
Your body loses fluids and electrolytes through sweat when you exercise. So, keeping yourself hydrated before, during, and after a workout can prevent dehydration, maintain a balanced body temperature, lubricate joints, and aid muscle recovery. An easy rule of thumb is to drink water if you’re thirsty and don’t wait until after you finish exercising.
5. When You’re Tired
Sometimes, fatigue can be a sign of mild dehydration. If you’re feeling tired or sleepy during the day, try drinking a glass of water. Staying hydrated can increase your energy levels and help you stay alert and focused.
6. Before a Bath
A hot shower or bath can lower your blood pressure. Drinking a glass of water before can help your body balance the effects, ensuring you stay hydrated throughout.
7. After Waking from a Nap
Like your sleep at night, your body loses fluids when you take a nap. Grab a glass of water after you wake up to replenish these losses and help shake off any lingering sleepiness.
8. When You’re Ill
If you’re unwell, particularly with a fever, vomiting, or diarrhea, your body loses more fluids than usual. Drinking water helps replace this lost fluid and makes it easier for your body to fight off infections and recover.
9. Before Going to Bed
Hydration can significantly influence your sleep quality. While you don’t want to drink too much and disrupt your sleep with bathroom visits, a small glass of water before bed can prevent dehydration during the night and help your body continue its restorative processes.
10. When You’re Exposed to Heat
On hot days or when you’re out in the sun for a long period, you’ll sweat more, causing faster water loss. Drinking water can help you stay cool and prevent heat-related illnesses like heat exhaustion, heat cramps, or heatstroke.
Remember, everybody is unique, so these times might not be a perfect fit for everyone. The key takeaway here is to stay mindful of your hydration. As a rule of thumb, listen to your body. If you’re thirsty, it’s a clear sign you need to drink water. However, don’t wait until you’re parched—keep sipping water throughout the day.
While there are numerous theories on how much water you should drink each day, a common recommendation is eight 8-ounce glasses, which equals about 2 liters or half a gallon. However, this number can vary depending on your lifestyle, climate, and physical activity.
Water is a crucial element in our life—it keeps our body functioning optimally, our skin glowing, and our minds alert. So keep a water bottle nearby and make the most of these optimal times to hydrate!