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Healthy Tip: Drink Water!

Glass of water There can be no life without water. I've heard this more than once from my scientist cousin. And of course, he's right. Our bodies are about 60% water, more or less, and every day that we live, breathe and move, we lose the water we have. So, reasonable deduction tells us we have to replenish that which we are losing! Our bodies use water to regulate our temperature, transport oxygen and nutrients to our cells, and assist in the process of digestion, metabolism and elimination. Without water, our bodies can't flush out waste and toxins. Not getting enough leads to dehydration; and this leads to a number of health problems, one of which can be death. Are you with me so far? Now here's where it can get challenging for some folks. Your body needs water. Not sodas, not coffee, not alcohol, not black tea. Even though those are fluids, they may be dehydrating and make your body need more water. If you consistently deprive your body of water, you may suffer from chronic dehydration. This isn't the same as collapsing in the desert heat while searching for an oasis, but it can definitely create some concerning health consequences including constipation, fatigue, digestive disorders, high and low blood pressure, respiratory problems, urinary infections and skin rashes. So, we need to drink water. How much? For many years, we've been told that we need to be drinking an average of 8 glasses of water a day. That can seem a bit daunting! More recently we are hearing our need for water changes with the amount we exercise, the food we eat, the weather, and other factors. Maybe one of the best ways to determine if you are getting enough water is to check the color of your urine. Urine is naturally pale yellow. That's the color you want it to be. If your urine is clear, then you can cut back on your water intake. If it is darker, then you need to drink more water. Keep in mind that riboflavin (vitamin B2), which is in most multivitamins, turns your urine fluorescent yellow so you'll need to avoid that for a day or so to get a true reading of color. It's really not that hard to add more water to your day. Here are some ideas to get you started:
  • Keep a bottle or a glass of water on your desk while you work - having it handy makes it easier to drink.
  • Avoid alcohol and coffee in excess, as well as soda and sugary drinks.
  • Squeeze some fresh lime or lemon into your water for a flavor boost.
  • Drink pure spring or filtered water in between meals. Too much water with food can dilute gastric acids making digestion weaker.
  • Slowly sip a cup of hot herbal or green tea after a meal. This supports digestion and provides needed fluid.
  • Make spritzers using natural sparkling mineral water, plain, or flavored, mixed with a little fruit juice.
  • Eat whole juicy fruits and vegetables.
  • Drink warm or room temperature water first thing in the morning to wake your system up and get things moving. Then spread your water intake out during the day to keep you better hydrated.
  • If you have kidney problems or you take diuretics, talk to your health care professional about your individual water needs.
What are your tricks for drinking enough water? I'd love to hear!

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49 comments

Comments

Justin says …

Alana, What do you think about Ionized water? Do you feel Ionized Alkaline PH Balanced water is good for the body? It has many benefits and has been used for years in Asia. Water is great!

megan says …

I saw on a show that in order to get the proper amount of water you body needs on a daily basis that you should take your body weight and divide it by 2 and that is how many ounces you need. But before I learned this I decided I would drink upwards of 3 liters a day and it hasn'e been that hard at all!

Louise Ross says …

I make a lot of stock during the winter, whether it's from chicken, turkey or vegetables. Often, I'll have a cup of plain stock with lunch or dinner. Though it's not "pure water" I think of it as warm, nutrient-enriched, highly flavorful, water-like liquid!

Jay says …

I'm confused now. You state above "that urine is a naturaly pale yellow color and that is the color you want it to be". The next line reads "if your urine is clear, you can cut back on your water intake". That being said, do I want yellow urine or clear urine?. Please advise. THANX

Laura Duffy says …

Something I do with children and a busy house is buy whatever citrus or stone fruit you have on same and cut it up and place it in the bottom of a pitcher, fill it with water and place it in the refrigerator. That way especially in the summer everyone opens the fridge and the first thing they see is cold water with mango or pomegranates infused. We all drink cold water but the fruit infused water is nice instead of a sugar ladened option.

Tony says …

If you must drink bottled water, please consider buying from a local bottler. That bottle of Fiji might look impressive, but its journey to your grocers' shelves used a lot of resources.

says …

@Justin: I have read quite a bit about it and it seems that most people can really feel a difference. After all, our natural water flows over rocks and stones in rivers and streams, gathering minerals and keeping a balance. Thanks for writing!

says …

@Jay: Many people drink water all day long, and as a consequence, are frequently in the bathroom, and their urine has no color to it at all. If you have clear urine often, it can be a sign that you are drinking just a bit more than what your body needs. Urine is naturally very pale yellow in color, not clear, so you want it to be the pale yellow color that it naturally is. Thanks for asking!

DAVID FRANKLIN says …

Great information. I like Fiji water best. But you should find on e that you like. I find I don't drink nearly enough water when I don't have fiji.

Liz says …

um what if i dont drink water for like 3 days striaght?? i do dat sometimes and i dont even notice

Brian says …

Whaat give up Coffee, could not do it

Luda says …

My physician, the health books I read, and the health and medical websites I use, etc. suggest to drink 6-8 GLASSES of water. It never crossed my mind to question what would be considered a GLASS. I also didn't know the amount of fluid a GLASS would hold. So, I took a glass from my kitchen cabinet and filled it with water. Then I poured the water into a fluid measuring cup. The result was: 8 oz. of water to drink which really isn't that much. I hope this info helps someone. It certainly made it easier for me to drink 8-8oz. GLASSES of water/fluids a day. (Of course, I didn't think to check my cookbooks.)

mitha says …

ofcouse ido drink water everyday,almos a lot

Nikolov says …

I think water is absolutely essential for humans' health. I have also found out trough years of trial and error that Artesan Water, especially one with a PH that is as high as possible (8.0) does the most good: it hydrates you all the way to the cellular level. Please do NOT drink anything such as Dasani or Aquafina or any other tap water for that matter! Not good for you(this from a friend that works for the city water system). I have switched to higher PH waters, but they tend to be quite expensive as they have to be shipped from abroad. Whole Foods does offer some great choices but again, on the expensive side.

Lulu Lapland says …

You should drink water (as much as possible without vomiting) 1 hour before a meal and 2 hours after it. This way water doesn't interfere with the digestive process. You'll immediately start noticing the difference once you try this strategy. Not only will you look and feel better but you'll drop the poundage and you constipation will vanish.

derf says …

best tasting water in the World is Fiji Save waste by putting your own tap water or bulk bottled water into a stainless klean kanteen

SJ says …

When you're thirsty instead of opening the fridge and grabbing a bottle of coca cola grab that gallon of water and fill your glass, it keeps you more refreshed and quenches your thirst better than any other beverage.

Annie says …

Do you sell Alkaline Water or do you know where I can buy it? Annie

Olivia says …

Just make sure your water does not contain any Flouride, it is a poision that is destructive to your thyroid gland, brain, and entire body. It is more toxic than lead and only slightly less toxic than arsenic!!! And if you boil water with flouride in it, it will only concentrate more! So be careful! Make sure your water has been through reverse-osmosis to take the flouride away. Be smart and do your own research, don't just take my word for it! And to the comment below, your urine should be as clear as possible. Yellow or darker urine means you have a poor diet and are harming your system (usually too much sugar and artificial flavors/preservatives). Clear urine means you're doing good!

says …

@Angela, Almost all water bottles are made out of #1 or #2 type plastic, which is BPA-free. If you are concerned however, just check to make sure the container is #1, #2, #4, #5 or #6 plastics, which are the BPA-free types. Thanks!

Angela Smith says …

Do you carry BPA free water?

Tom says …

If you drink lots of water, can that help to control things like adrenalin surges?

Jan Howard says …

After moving to the city, had a REAL problem drinking enough water. THEN I was introduced to ionized alkaline water and absolutly love it. It tastes GREAT and found myself actually craving it. And the health benefits are definitely a wonderful added bonus. I drink a quart first thing in the morning and my coffee made with it is soooo smooth. The fact that it is a great tasting way to fight the over acidity of our American diet AND helps keep the "bottles" out of our environment makes it a total winner in my book. Ionized alkaline water bars are showing up everywhere, making it possible for people to buy "GOOD" water without the "bottles" and generating a great income for the business providing it. Everyone wins. Drink up everyone!

RP says …

Please double check the accuracy of this statement in your material. "Drink pure spring or filtered water in between meals. Too much water with food can dilute gastric acids making digestion weaker." I believe this to be a misconception. It is based on the notion that the stomach produces only a fixed amount of acid (HCl) to aid digestion. So if we drink water with a meal, that fixed amount of acid will be diluted. I believe the correct concept is that the stomach produces whatever level of acid is required to digest the food in it. So if we drink water with a meal, the stomach will automatically increase the amount of acid produced to provide the right concentration for digestion. Avoiding drinking water with a meal can have adverse consequences. Some individuals will become constipated because of insufficient fluid in the stool. Bottom line, drinking water with a meal is likely fine. I would think that letting your level of thirst be your guide as to how much water to drink with a meal is the best advice.

Bev says …

Do you have "hint", if so how much is it?

Bepkom says …

Our product selection varies from region to region. The best thing to do is contact your local store and ask if they carry it. Thanks!

I. Bolton says …

Are you carrying bottled alkaline water. If yes, cost?

Donna Soszynski says …

Where does wholefoods 365 bottled water come from? Everyone watch the film "TAPPED"…Wholefoods should ban plastic water. The water industry is a scam. Stolen water + toxic plastic = an unhealthy planet and people.

Bepkom says …

@RonneC: Thanks for your question! It's really difficult to say one way or the other, however if you're concerned about BPAs in your body it's probably best to just buy another.

RonneC says …

Several years ago ( 6) I bought a New Wave BPA free water bottle from a Whole foods store. I drink beaucoup H20 daily ( 1/2 body weight in ozs.) mostly from this bottle. Is the bottle still good all these yrs. later?

Bernie says …

I have heard from friends that ionized alkaline water is beneficial, and stories about the improvements they have experienced. I checked online about Water Ionizer and found they could improve Blood Pleasure, Cancer, Weight Loss and more. one search engine result calls it snake oil on tap, can you help clarify. Bernie

Bern says …

The negative charge of ionized alkaline water will attract the positive ions of acids and neutralize them within the body.

Merle Stickland says …

Highly riveting blog post.

Bobby H says …

@clare Fortescue, Our beverage bottles are made with P.E.T. plastic and our gallon jugs are made with H.D.P.E. plastic and both of these are B.P.A. free. Happy hydrating!

Brantlie says …

I would like to see something along the lines of an in store machine that could dispense alkaline on the spot. I feel that freshly bottled alkaline water would be even better that pre-bottled and shipped water.

clare Fortescue says …

is yor 1 gallon bottle of spring water in a bpa free bottle

Helena Leathers Jones says …

I'm trying to find a case of alkaline water evo alkaline water, would you or anyone no of a store who might sell it. Thanks Helena

says …

@Helena It's likely that your community Whole Foods Market sells the EVO alkaline water. However, we won't know till we ask. The below link will help you identify the contact information for your community store and a Team Member there will be happy to chat with you regarding the availability of this product. Happy hunting! www.wholefoodsmarket.com/stores

Paul says …

Here in Thailand, everybody seems to drink water instead of soft drinks and coffee like they do in the States. It mostly has to do with income disparity, but it's good for my health because it gets me in the habit of just drinking water. I now have the habit of drinking only water all day long, with a mixture of fresh juices. Much better for my waistline in my health!

czander says …

You now carry alkaline bottled water with pH of 9.5 by Elements brand. You should check with pharmacists because it is possible that alkaline water MAY have an ADVERSE EFFECT WITH MEDICINE Even though normal pH is 7.4 and 9.5 is 2.10 higher, it is 2100 times more micro than regular water, and was told this by a biochemist aat the healthclub. Tap was is 3-5 pH, so drinking 9.5 is much higher than tap water.

Pia says …

Has Whole Foods ever considered setting up a commercial ionizer where people can bring their own bottles for re-fill. It would cut down considerably on cost of buying ionized water.

Nikki - Community Moderator says …

@PIA - A lot of our store locations do offer this and you can pay per gallon. Check with your local store to see if this is something they offer.

talium.info says …

That is a great tip especially to those new to the blogosphere. Short but very precise information… Appreciate your sharing this one. A must read article!

Miguel says …

You said above:” There can be no life without water.” A correction is required here; there can be no life forms without water. A body is not requirement for life; even though we truly believe it does. Now to experience the space-time dimension we called the world for that… a body is require.

Lee Moore says …

Can you please tell me where Whole Foods gets there spring water (where is there source). Also do you think spring water is better than good filtered water?

Nikki - Community Moderator says …

@LEE - The origin for our bottled spring water will be printed on each bottle!

cnickyxoxo1 says …

I EAT ICE CREAM...IT MAKES ME THIRSTY EVEN THOUGH THE ARTICLE STATES TO STAY AWAY FROM SUGAR!!!!

Janet says …

I am interested in learning about alkaline water.

anna rene says …

Good day, I was interested in knowing how you processed your alkaline water. I read the best and safest form is spring water which usually has a PH factor of 8.5 or there about. Amounts between the 7.5 and 8.5 range being ideal for daily intake. Also the was a article http://www.med-health.net/Alkaline-Water-Benefits.html that suggested certain processing can be harmful. I am somewhat in a quandary over the million pages of information pro and con though it seems like most sites are in agreement with the values ... I was wondering what the thought was behind a higher PH value in the refill station? If you would review the article and advise me if your processing is done in this way. Too much high a PH value is stated as harmful? Confused ... Any light you could shed on this subject would be appreciated. Many blessings Anna Rene