More trips to the water cooler can boost your fitness and health

in General 01 January 1999

Two-thirds of the human body is made up of water, which is vital to its functioning. Without water, most of the chemical reactions in the cells cannot take place. Water carries nutrients around our bodies, regulates temperature, lubricates joints and flushes away waste. The human body loses around 2.5 litres of fluids a day through sweating, breathing and urinating. While some of this is replaced at a cellular level, the body needs a regular intake of water throughout the day to avoid dehydration and maintain peak performance.

Effects of not drinking enough water

There are three levels of dehydration: mild, moderate and severe, as described by the NHS here. Thirst is the first sign of dehydration, and may be followed by headaches, fatigue and dizziness if this signal is ignored. Urine becomes concentrated and appears dark yellow, and urination will decrease, with only small amounts passed a few times a day. The lips, mouth and eyes may become dry.

Poor hydration can paradoxically cause fluid retention as the body tries to conserve fluids, often leading to puffiness of the skin and bloating. The symptoms of mild or moderate dehydration will disappear very quickly when the sufferer drinks enough water.

The benefits of drinking water

Drinking water prevents many unpleasant symptoms, but it also has numerous positive effects on health, well-being and appearance, as detailed at Skin cells are hydrated and plumped up, making wrinkles and lines appear shallower, and the texture of the skin is also improved by the flushing out of impurities and toxins. Maintaining a good supply of water improves digestion and protects against constipation and kidney stones. It will also boost the immune system, helping the body fight infections and germs.

Maintaining a good intake of water will benefit those who are slimming, as the liver, which normally metabolises fat, is forced to spend time aiding the kidneys in their detoxifying role when they do not receive enough water. Water naturally suppresses the appetite and gives the sensation of fullness to prevent overeating.

Water and fitness

Visiting water coolers or drinking fountains before exercising is an easy way to improve performance. Energy is boosted as oxygen and other essential nutrients are able to reach cells faster, and the heart needs to exert less effort to pump blood around the circulatory system. Joints and muscles are able operate more efficiently, and the chances of developing cramps or spraining a muscle are diminished. Cognitive function is improved due to the increased oxygen flow to the brain, and stress is lowered as fluids help hormones such as endorphins to flow around the body.

This article is created in association with Water Coolers Direct, suppliers of popular drinking water cooling solutions for offices, homes and fitness centres.

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