The Challenge – Drink 3 litres of water/day for 10 days.
I’m sure you have heard “drink 8 glasses of water each day” rule before. Yet getting all that water in seems like a bit of a chore! You actually don’t need to drink all of that water, because about 20% of that total will come from the food you eat.
Foods that are greater than 90% water by weight:
Cucumber Iceberg Lettuce Celery
Radishes Tomato Green Peppers
Cauliflower Watermelon Spinach
Star Fruit Strawberries Broccoli
Water does more than alleviate your thirst, it regulates your body temperature, keeps your joints nice and lubricated, helps prevent infections and delivers nutrients to our cells. It shouldn’t be too hard to see why dehydration is such a grind on your system.
Your body is roughly 60% water at this very moment. If you have tried some fasting, you know that you can go days, even weeks without food. However, you can only survive a few days, even hours with water.
The temperature in Winnipeg has been in the high 20’s for over a week now, and we are all getting used to being a bit “sweaty”! It’s easy to become dehydrated when more water is leaving your body than going in. It’s not just water that’s making your shirt damp, important electrolytes that are necessary for normal function are also leaving your cells.
Breathing, sweating, urine, bowl movements are constantly pulling water out of your system, as they should. If that water is not replaced, those systems will most certainly be affected. Dehydration may lead to constipation, urine can darken, if prolonged, salt crystals can form in the kidneys causing kidney stones.
Studies have shown that lack of fluids can be a common trigger for migraines. The headaches you get will last longer if you are dehydrated. You may also find it difficult to concentrate, have short-term memory issues, and those around you may notice you becoming a moody, short fused bastard!
When you are properly hydrated, the quality of your sleep will be enhanced (notice that hydration was part of the 10 Day Sleep Challenge!), you will be able to think more clearly, your body will function better, it will be easier to be calm.
How do I know if I’m dehydrated?
Fatigue Dizziness Dry Mouth Constipation Moody Bastard
Confusion Thirst Dry Eyes Headaches Less Urination
The easiest way to check for dehydration is to check the colour of your urine.
Everyone gets up and heads to the bathroom in the morning, so that’s a great place to start. If your urine resembles lemonade, your doing well, apple juice – not so good, tea – worse. You should also need to urinate throughout the day. Think of yourself like a leaky bucket – it can only be full for a moment, because it is always losing water. You might “be” well hydrated, but without additional water, you will not “stay” hydrated.
I don’t like the taste of water!
I’m of the “suck-it-up” generation, it’s not Buckley’s, it’s water! Just drink it. When most of us older folks were young, drinking out of the garden hose was an every summer day occurrence, that water also had the added flavour of warmed rubber – mmmmgood! If rubber flavouring isn’t your thing, you could try adding some veggies to your water. Cucumbers, oranges, berries, lemons all can give water a nice fresh taste.
That’s not water!
I believe that society is starting to swing towards a healthier lifestyle. It will take a few decades for it to really become apparent, but it’s happening. Most people are becoming aware that high sugar drinks are not healthy, nor are their “sugar-free” substitutes. Drinking soda is not a solution to dehydration, nor is fruit juice! Both are simply adding to the obesity/diabetes epidemic that is crushing our communities. If you feel thirsty – just reach for water. Please also be aware that the world is drowning in plastic bottles – recycle always, and use a re-useable bottle where you can.
Can you drink water? Obviously you can!
Will you take up the 3 Litre Challenge? Simply – you should!
Print off the HABIT TRACKER to help you stay accountable!