What is so special about water?
We’re always being told of the value and importance of drinking water and to be honest – this was not something I was ever particularly good at doing! It’s not that I didn’t like drinking ordinary water, infused water or diluted squash; it’s just that as a busy mum and a teacher– I often forgot!
My wake up call, to encourage me to drink more fluid, came in a rather personal and “road to Damascus” style enlightenment! My mum suffers from the debilitating condition of Myeloma (a type of blood cancer that affects the bones). Whilst at a conference about this condition, my family were shown a graph! It revealed the life expectancy of those patients with the condition who drank 2L of water a day against those who didn’t! It was a brutal reality check! Whilst drinking water was evidently essential for Myeloma patients (we now make sure my mum drinks plenty of H2O), the resonating message to me was that the reason people were surviving longer was because their kidneys were able to function more effectively! Our bodies are made up of over 60% water, if they don’t get replenished, it’s not surprising that organs, muscles joints, etc stop working! This is logical and obvious, I know! At that conference, it hit me like a bolt of lightening! We all MUST drink MORE water! So from that day onwards – I have tried to drink more and encourage my family to do the same!
It’s not always been easy, as mentioned before, I didn’t not drink it because I disliked it! I still have days where I am better than others! Sometimes I am so good I drink my recommend water intake, (although I then have to suffer the inevitable consequences of being a teacher and unable to go to the W.C) and then other days, all that has passed my lips by 5pm is a cold cup of tea; which I then desperately try to make up for in the evening! The down side of this is of course, my body waking me up in the middle of the night for a trip to the W.C!
To help me stay on track and to keep me focused – I have to remind myself regularly of obvious benefits:
- Lose weight – what is not to like about that? It has no fat, no calories, no carbs, no sugar – I crave less when I drink more!
- Increased Energy! I definitely need more of this in my life! I know that if I’m ever thirsty, then I am already dehydrated – this obviously leads to fatigue, but can lead to muscle weakness, dizziness and far worse symptoms!
- A headache cure! I’m always reading and marking, so headache seems almost natural to me! I’ve noticed the headaches decrease with the more water I take in!
- Healthier skin! – I’ve always had problem skin, but it does definitely improve when I drink more H20
- Helps with Digestive problems – As stated before, the body needs water to function correctly.
- Cleanse kidneys! This must be working as I definitely take more trips to the W.C and my urine is definitely more diluted; for me the medical proof was in the Myeloma graph!
- Help you to exercise effectively – not only will you have more energy but if you drink water regularly it enables you to work out easier – just don’t have your water intake right before otherwise it sloshes around and is not pleasant!
So overall in the last couple of years my water uptake has increased, I actually feel thirsty more regularly and this encourages me and reminds me to drink! However, trying to encourage my kids to drink more water has been, and continues to be, my next battle! Just trying to get them to drink full stop, is always a challenge; unless it is a bought J20 loaded with sugar, which they are then able to consume in less than 30 seconds!
I’ve even tried a water challenge competition. I designed and created a weekly chart (get me!). I thought we should all do it, believing if it was just the kids, they would be less inclined and encouraged to do it! There were 8 empty glasses ( I know that the recommended intake for water varies – but I thought 8 would be a good start!) Once a glass of water had been consumed a single glass could be coloured in! The idea being that there would be a prize for the winner, who had drank the most at the end of the week! We managed it all for about 2 weeks – and I always won! Yay for me, but not exactly what I was aiming for!
My pursuit to encourage my kids to drink more is ongoing, having been dreadful at remembering to drink in the past, I do feel hypocritical, but not only do I now know and understand the importance of water – I do believe in it’s benefits! I shall continue to strive to come up with ways of encouraging my kids to drink water.
My challenge continues……. I’ll let you know how I get on!