Water Consumption and Its Impact to Skin & Hair
The Benefits of Drinking Water
If you’ve ever looked to improve your diet and your overall health, then the first thing you should do is make sure you’re drinking enough water. We need at least 2 liters of water a day to perform at our best, and although you absorb a small percentage of the recommended daily intake through the moisture in food, that simply isn’t enough. If you’re looking to optimize your health, drinking water is the first step.
When you don’t drink enough, you become dehydrated. Daily dehydration wreaks havoc on your system: you become fatigued, lack the mental energy to perform tasks, experience headaches and dizziness, and your blood pressure drops. Consuming just enough water to survive isn’t enough for you to thrive.
The biggest benefit is weight loss. Soda is loaded with sugar, and the caffeine in coffee and tea dehydrates you instead of hydrating you. Then when you add cream, milk, or sugar, you’re adding even more calories. You never want to drink your calories, since liquids aren’t as filling as solid foods. Plus reducing the amount of coffee, tea, soda and other high calorie liquids will allow you to eat more of what you love.
Water is also a great appetite suppressant. It makes you feel fuller than you are—if you’ve ever struggled with hunger, then you might be getting mixed signals and interpreting thirst as hunger. Drinking a glass of water before dinner can curb your appetite, helping you to eat less without feeling hungry and frustrated.
Headaches can occur because of dehydration, so ditch the pills and pick up a water bottle instead. If your brain is deprived of fluids, you may find it difficult to concentrate. It’s hard to be energetic when your body lacks its most essential need.
Just how much water you should drink depends on your environment and your specific bodily needs. While weight, height, medical history and how active you are affect the amount of water you need, there are some general guidelines. For men, you should be drinking between 8 – 14 glasses per day, and for women you should drink 6 – 12 glasses per day (more if you’re breast feeding). While it’s best to be drinking actual water, these numbers include all fluids, such as coffee, tea, milk with cereal, etc…
Hydration and Skincare
Being consistently dehydrated affects the health of your heart, liver, pancreas and kidney. Your skin is an organ with cells made up primarily of water—when it’s deprived of water, it suffers, as does the rest of your bodily functions. But there’s more to it than that.
Your skin has a natural barrier that retains moisture, and if this barrier’s functions are disrupted, your skin may become dry and sensitive. When you neglect hydration, your skin can’t perform at its best, leading to premature aging and dry, sensitive skin. Most of your skin’s moisture comes from the body, so if you’re drinking enough water, then that healthy skin happily absorbs water from moisturizers and creams. If you aren’t adequately hydrated, the benefit of skincare products is impacted too.
Another big benefit to drinking water is its ability to flush your system of toxins. This cleanse keeps your skin clean, pushing out bacteria and reducing the risk of acne and other skin problems. If your skin is oily, then your pores will clog up, eventually leading to acne breakouts. Drinking water balances the natural oils sitting on your face with moisture. Drinking the right amount of water every day might be the easiest way to cure your acne.
If you want to maximize hydration for a healthy, plump, fresh looking glow, you can try using skincare tools, such as an at home microdermabrasion device. Microdermabrasion tools such as Silk’n ReVit exfoliate your skin and help clear away dead skin cells, resulting in refreshed, rejuvenated skin. Exfoliating with devices like the ReVit improves the look of scars and wrinkles and restores a balance to the appearance of your skin. To maximize the benefit of microdermabrasion, it’s recommended you moisturize immediately after usage.
Hydration and Your Hair
Hydration doesn’t just affect your skin—it also affects the health of your hair. When your body is running low on fluids, your hair weakens and is prone to breakage. Dry hair is frizzier, deals with harsh treatment poorly, and lacks volume and shine. If you’ve ever wondered why your hair won’t do what it’s told, then it might be due to dehydration. The product you use in your hair will perform better if your hair is healthy, too.
Make Drinking Water a Habit
Water takes several stops before it reaches your cells. It goes through your intestines, is filtered by your kidneys, and is absorbed by your blood cells. Don’t expect a single glass of water to improve the look of your skin and hair. Consistent hydration is vital. This means it needs to become a habit, but like any other healthy habit, it can be difficult to integrate into your daily routine. Here are some tips that will help make drinking water a habit you can keep.
Carry a Water Bottle Everywhere
An excellent way to increase your water intake is to invest in a high-quality water bottle. Many include measurements, so you can track exactly how much water you’re drinking. This helps you make sure you’re getting the recommended amount every day. Taking it with you ensures you’re never stuck without a source of water, even if you’re on the job or out somewhere running errands. You can even get bottles with built in filters like the Brita Bottle.
Invest in a Filter
Drinking water straight from the tap can be unpleasant or dangerous depending on the quality of water where you live. Filters absorb chemicals from the water, making it both safe to drink and tasteless. On top of that, using a filtered pitcher reduces waste, and saves you the expense of buying bottled water.
Add Some Flavor
Water is plain, and for lovers of sweet, sugary drinks, it can be an unpleasant change in routine. You can add subtle flavour by adding fruits in to your pitcher. Herbs like mint or basil can add a subtle flavour as well. If neither of these work, try sugar-free water flavour drops – available in a large variety of flavours, from Apple Pie to Concord grape. If these options don’t appeal, you can try pre-made flavour infused water bottles. The downside to these flavoured waters is their cost and their detriment to the environment. Water bottles are one of the world’s worst forms of waste, something to consider when you make your decision.
Try Sparkling Water
If you’re used to drinking soda with every meal, then you probably enjoy the carbonation. Sparkling water gives you a chance to enjoy the same sensation without any of the calories. It’s an alternative that might just make your transition into drinking more water that much easier. The only downside is the cost, as sparkling water can be expensive, even if you purchase a device that filters it for you at home. Sparkling water is a good way to transition into changing your diet, but not a permanent fixture.
Drink a Glass of Water Before a Meal
Water acts as a natural appetite suppressant, so having a glass before and after dinner can help curb your appetite by making you feel fuller. It’s an easy way to make drinking water a habit too. Nutrition gives you energy, and water does too. It’s necessary you consume adequate amounts of water to perform at your best.
Drink First Thing in the Morning
When you wake up, grab a glass of water alongside your morning coffee. Better yet, substitute coffee with cold water! Not only will this help you integrate drinking more water into your daily routine, it’ll energize and refresh you for the day ahead.
Eat Water-rich Foods
One of the most important things is making sure your diet is nutritious. Obviously supplementing your diet with water is important, but your body also absorbs a lot of water from the foods you eat. If you struggle to get into the habit of drinking 8 glasses a day, then try picking up foods rich with water. Fruits are at the top of the list, followed by broth-based soups and leafy greens, like lettuce and spinach.
We hope this article helped you understand the benefits to drinking water. Adjusting your diet and your routine to include it might be difficult at first, but the longer you work at it, the easier it will become. Although it takes time to see the affects, you’ll notice a boost in energy and a healthy glow to your skin and hair. You’ll never want to go anywhere without your water bottle again!
- Shannon O'connell