The Importance of Water

water heartWhile scanning Facebook the other day, I came across a list of the benefits of drinking water. Just for fun, I checked a few places on the Net to get more information. Below is the list of facts I compiled.

First, the bad news:

75% of Americans are chronically dehydrated.

In 37% of Americans, the thirst mechanism is so weak that it’s mistaken for hunger.

Dehydration will slow down one’s metabolism as much as 30%, even in mild cases.

The top trigger for daytime fatigue is a lack of water.

The loss of as little as 2% body water can cause short-term memory problems, difficulty with simple math, and difficulty focusing on computer screens or printed pages.

Now, for the good news:

In a study at the University of Washington, drinking a glass of water shut down late night hunger pangs in almost 100% of the participants.

Early studies show that 8-10 glasses of water a day may significantly ease back and joint pain for a large majority of sufferers.

Drinking 5 glasses of water daily decreases the risk of colon cancer by 45%, plus it can slash the risk of breast cancer by 79%, and one is 50% less likely to develop bladder cancer.

Proper hydration can help prevent headaches. Some people have reported that drinking water at the first sign of a headache will make it go away.

Drinking 8-10 glasses a day improves the immune system, and can help protect the body from many ailments, including the flu, kidney stones, heart attack and some forms of cancer.

None of this is surprising when you consider that, on average, the human body is two-thirds water. Water is crucial to numerous vital functions. Water:

water glass

Transports nutrients and oxygen to cells

Moisturizes the air in the lungs

Regulates the metabolism

Protects vital organs

Helps organs absorb nutrients more efficiently

Regulates body temperature

Detoxifies the body

Protects and moisturizes the joints

Helps maintain regularity

You can see how important it is to drink your 8 glasses of water a day, can’t you? I’ll admit that it hasn’t been easy for me, but over the last few years I’ve increased my water intake significantly. It started in 2010, when I toured most of the summer. I got in the habit of drinking several bottles of water a day to combat the heat. By the time Fall came around, the habit had taken hold, so I stayed with it. I continued throughout 2011 as I continued to tour.

It was harder at home, but I’ve managed to make good progress. The first step was to switch from soda to sweet tea. I then cut back on the sugar and switched to green tea. Once I got used to that, I started replacing the tea with water. Now I play a game with myself to see how much water I can drink each day.

For me, the benefits have been noticeable. I feel better, and I’ve lost weight without changing my diet. I still eat all the things I love, but I’m slowly shedding pounds. I’ve also had far fewer headaches than in the past. Now that I know water can help fight fatigue, I’m paying attention to how much water I drink in the afternoon.

Now that I’m paying attention to how much water I drink, I feel better, and I’m healthier. I’m not a doctor, and I can’t guarantee results, but I’d be willing to bet that increasing your water intake will be a good thing for you, too. It certainly won’t hurt to try it and see. Either way, you can still…

Play with your food!


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About Lane

Lane Baldwin is a an internationally-acclaimed singer, songwriter, author and food lover. He wasn't trained in France, and he doesn't have his own TV show. He just loves to cook, and loves sharing what he's learned over the years. In his "real life," Lane has toured the world, bringing his special brand of Blues-infused Americana to millions of fans. At home he leads a quiet life filled with good books, good food and good friends.