Our skin loves when we stay hydrated. But what’s more is hydration is good for the overall health of our bodies. Water is the main component of our bodies and has lots of important functions: carrying nutrients, flushing out toxins, boosting metabolism and keeping energy levels up. Water keeps the mind alert, too, as even mild dehydration can make it difficult to concentrate.
As for skin, it’s smoother and more elastic when it is well hydrated; and water is essential for collagen production. The skin is made up of three layers: the outer layer (epidermis), the underlying skin (dermis) and the subcutaneous tissue. When the outermost layer of the epidermis is dehydrated, skin loses elasticity and feels rough.
We need to replenish the body’s water supply to keep it functioning properly. Linda Gifford, owner of Earthen Treasures in Berne explained, “Since every bodily function depends on water, dehydration can have very harmful consequences like constipation, urinary tract infections and kidney stones. And, loss of body water accelerates the aging process.” So how much water should we really consume each day?
Gifford recommended, “The eight-glass average per day is still a good rule of thumb. And ‘good’ water is best. Be cautious about tap water, softened water and fluoridated water,” she said. “(Aside from) water bottles putting too many plastic bottles into landfills, the plastic also leaches toxic chemicals—especially when exposed to sun and heat. Carry a reusable bottle, glass or metal, with you instead.”
Too boring for you?
And for those who find plain water boring? “Add one-half of a fresh-squeezed lemon to your water,” Gifford said. “There are also flavored Stevia drops that are non-caloric and nonglycemic. Many of my customers enjoy adding 1 or 2 tablespoons of liquid minty chlorophyll to their daily water bottle. And there are great, electrolyte mineral powders to add to water that will refresh you almost instantaneously and are much better for you than the sugary ‘energy’ drinks. Herbal teas—iced or hot—are wonderful ways to stay hydrated, too.”
• try sparkling water instead of plain
• use ice cubes made from pure fruit juice
• add chunks of fruit (pineapple, watermelon or honeydew melon) to a pitcher, allowing to steep in the fridge for a few hours
• add slices of citrus fruits, cucumbers or muddled mint leaves to individual glasses
In Gifford’s opinion, “The very worst beverage is ANY carbonated beverage because the acidic ‘ph’ is very inflammatory and tends to deplete mineral reserves in the body,” she said. Too, Linda cautioned against caffeinated drinks because they are diuretic (dehydrating the body faster as they increase the amount of water and sodium excreted in urine). Sugary drinks, like soda pop and sweetened teas, add extra calories and drive up blood sugar levels—causing the body to produce more insulin.
Healthy hydration—and glowing skin—also comes from eating foods high in water content and rich in vitamins and minerals. Which foods accomplish this? Try strawberries, watermelon, cantaloupe, cucumbers, tomatoes and spinach.
Forget to drink water during the day? Try “water consumption apps” like: Waterlogged for iPhone Water Drink Reminder for Android
Do whatever works best for you to stay hydrated. Your beautiful, healthy skin—and happy, energized mind and body—will thank you!