About 75% of the American population is chronically dehydrated, and it’s seriously undermining their health. Even the remaining 25% could benefit from drinking more water than they do.
The problem is easily fixed—just drink more water—but most people don’t realize that waiting to get thirsty isn’t enough to ward off mild dehydration, nor do they realize what’s at stake.
Even mild dehydration stresses every system in your body and can lead to fatigue, feeling groggy, irritability, loss of focus, impaired memory, headaches, muscle cramps/weakness, pain, poor digestion, nausea, constipation, increased allergy reactions and asthma symptoms, bad breath, sugar cravings and false hunger, dry skin, increased heart rate and higher risk of heart attack and stroke.
Dehydration lowers metabolism, thwarting weight loss; good hydration helps weight loss by making the conversion of stored fat into energy more efficiently. Dehydration can make any pain a lot worse; good hydration can ease pain and sometimes even eliminate it. Dehydration has been associated with various eye problems including dry eye syndrome and cataracts.
Studies show that good hydration reduces the risk of various cancers, including colon, breast, kidney and bladder cancer, probably by helping the body to detoxify. By thinning the blood, good hydration helps reduce high blood pressure and heart disease.
What is adequate hydration? At minimum ½ body weight in ounces—so if you weigh 160 pounds, you should drink 80 ounces of water, or 10 cups, daily. Other beverages count if they don’t contain caffeine or alcohol; these have a diuretic effect and remove more water from your body than they add. You can still have a cup of tea or a glass of wine but drink an extra cup of pure water to make up for it. A diet high in fruits and vegetables can add another 2 cups of fluid.
Drinking enough water should make you urinate about once every two hours during the day, and, except for first-morning urine, it should be colorless to very pale yellow (unless you’ve just taken vitamin B2, which turns urine bright yellow).
An extremely hot day or heavy exercise will make requirements go way up. Also, if you’re dealing with a chronic health condition like headaches, allergies, or arthritis, an additional quart of water a day could significantly reduce your symptoms. Extra water also helps detoxification and weight loss.
Of course, it has to be decent water, and tap water rarely makes the grade. Bottled water usually isn’t much better; it’s also expensive and bad for the environment. A home water treatment system is really the best way to go. When our founder Raymond Francis was working to recover his own health, he investigated all the home treatment system options available for his personal use and found the reverse osmosis and carbon water filtration system we sell today. He still believes it’s the best filtration system on the market, and very cost-effective at pennies per gallon to use.