Health Benefits Of Drinking Water And What Is The Best Water To Drink?

No matter what your activity level is, water is one of the most essential components of any exercise regime and lifestyle. Without water, your body can’t function at its best which can also cause all sorts of ailments such as headaches, fatigue, low mood and lack of focus. Water is the carrier of life and focusing on hydration can have a dramatic impact on your health. 

If you are a professional athlete, proper hydration becomes even more important as you rely heavily on your body and its performance. In this article, we’ll go through the health benefits of drinking water, when the best time is to drink water, how much water to drink, how athletes can benefit from proper hydration methods, and finally, what kind of water you should drink. Let’s start with the benefits:

Health Benefits of Drinking Water

1. Improves Brain Function

Water can have a positive effect on brain function and focus. When feeling groggy, many people will reach for a cup of coffee. The fact is, your brain is 70% water and needs hydration, more than caffeine to function optimally. Replacing a cup of coffee with a tall glass of water will rehydrate your cells and replenish them to an optimal state as opposed to cause further dehydration from the caffeine.

As an example to illustrate the importance of hydration for brain function, this study illustrates that even being dehydrated by 2% can have profound effects on psychomotor skills, memory, and general attention.

2. Promotes Weight Loss

Drinking water regularly can help maintain and lose weight. Water acts as an appetite suppressant and can give you the feeling of fullness, preventing cravings for excess sugar and fat. In addition, if you are experiencing excessive bloating from high fat and high salt foods, drinking water can help reduce water weight and decrease overall body weight.

As you increase water intake, you are decreasing intake of high calorie beverages. A study showed that those who replaced water with sugary soft drinks have a 9% lower calorie intake than those who consumed very little water.

3. Detoxification

One of the most important functions of water is its ability to flush out toxins. When undergoing any diet or detox, drinking copious amounts of water can support the digestive system and prevent issues such as constipation and nausea.

Our bodies are constantly detoxing the toxins we take in through our food and environment.  Drinking water also ensures that toxins are flushed out from the sweat and urine regularly, even when your system is overloaded from large meals or excessive alcohol or sugar consumption. 

4. Improves Complexion

Your skin is made up of three layers, the outer epidermis layer, the underlying dermis layer and the subcutaneous tissue. When the epidermis layer is dehydrated it can appear dry and lack elasticity. Seeing as it comprises of 60% water, keeping your skin hydrated by drinking water will keep your skin moisturized from the inside out and will promote elasticity.

Water is also effective in clearing acne by acting as a carrier of nutrients to the skin and by removing toxins and contaminants within the skin that could produce acne causing bacteria.

5. Delivers Oxygen Throughout the Body

One vital benefit of drinking water is its ability in carrying oxygen throughout the body. Blood consists of 90% water, so upping your intake of water can increase the amount of oxygen distributed to different parts of the body.

6. Lubricates joints

The cartilage between joints and spinal discs acts as a shock absorber. Constant dehydration can dry out the cartilage, reducing the cushion provided between joints. This can cause the wearing down of joints and can increase the likelihood of an injury.

Drinking water can effectively lubricate the joints, making for smoother movements and reducing wear on joints and the spine.

7. Prevents Kidney Stones

Kidney stones can form in the urinary tract and can cause symptoms such as severe pain in the back, side, and below the ribs, pain during urination, and nausea.

Drinking more water can prevent kidney stones by increasing water in the urine, diluting the minerals so that clumps of crystallization are less likely to form.

8. Helps Prevent Headaches

One of the most common causes of headaches is dehydration. Although water hasn’t been shown to have profound effects on all types of headaches, drinking more water can definitely curb the pain of dehydration related headaches. (1) So, the next time your head starts throbbing, instead of reaching for an ibuprofen, try a glass of water.

When Should You Drink Water?

How do you know when the best time is to drink water? Generally, you should drink water whenever you feel thirsty, but in order to maximize health benefits, it is actually suggested to drink your first glass of water first thing in the morning.

When you sleep, you lose a significant amount of water, between 1 to 1 ½ lbs per night. So it’s important to replenish fluids as soon as possible upon waking. When you wake up, you’re at a time when you’re the most dehydrated, making it an optimal time to take in some H2O.

Drinking a glass of water first thing in the morning can help ignite your metabolism, promoting weight loss and weight maintenance throughout the day. Adding lemon is especially useful and can aid in the detox process as well as promote bile secretion from the liver.

On the contrary, It is not recommended to drink water right before bed, as it can increase Nocturia. Nocturia is a condition where there is an increased need to urinate at night. This condition can have an effect on sleep quality and adversely, mood. Because of this, avoiding drinking water at least 4 hours before bed is recommended.

Because of our busy lives, it can be easy to forget to drink water throughout the day. One of the most popular hydration reminder apps, AloeBud is perfect for those who are motivated by visuals. This app allows you to grow a virtual garden by drinking water and checking off the reminders as you go.

Another way to remind yourself to drink more water is to choose scheduled moments throughout the day to drink. This can be before each meal, after bathroom breaks or you can even drink a large amount of water upon waking up. Whatever method you choose, ensuring you have a reusable water bottle to carry around with you during the day, that is a great first step.

How Much Water Should You Drink Each Day?

Did you know our bodies are made of 60% water? We are in a constant cycle of taking in and losing water through sweating, urination and evaporation. Replenishing your body with the right amount of H2O each day is essential not only for proper hydration, but for almost every cellular process within the body. Drinking enough water is important, so how do you know if you’re getting the right amount of H2O per day?

The rule of thumb is eight 8-oz glasses of water, or two liters per day. However, if you are partaking in excessive physical activity or if you are spending long periods in the hot sun, it’s suggested to up your intake. Also, if you feel thirsty, that is a physiological signal to hydrate, so drink up whenever you recognize symptoms of thirst, which can include dry mouth, decreased urine output and headache.

Also, hydration needs can differ between males and females. For an adult female, it’s recommended to intake 91 oz of water per day, while for males, it’s 125 oz.

Water Intake Recommendations for Athletes

Athletes can lose as much as 6-10% of their body’s water through their sweat compared to 2% for normal activity. This means that athletes are at greater risk for dehydration, which can have negative effects on performance and can induce fatigue and increase the likelihood of an injury.

Muscle tissue is made of 80% water. When you undergo high intensity exercise, your muscles undergo oxidative stress, resulting in cell and tissue damage. Hydrating before and after workouts can curb oxidative stress and protect muscles from stress and injury.

Because of their high level of activity, athletes require more water intake, more often. Here are some tips for hydration if you are an athlete or engage in rigorous physical activity on a daily basis.

  • You don’t need to drink water to get hydrated – Many athletes often need more nutrition than the average person. This is to fuel their bodies and to promote endurance and strength when it matters most. Drinking beverages such as milk and eating water dense foods such as fruits, vegetables, even yogurt can be extremely hydrating and provide the nutrition you need to perform at your best.
  • Up the hydration with electrolytes – Electrolytes can help replenish the minerals that were lost through sweat during exercise. Beverages such as coconut water contain electrolytes that can help balance the fluids in your body and prevent muscle soreness and dehydration. 
  • Take hydration breaks – It’s important not only to hydrate, but to hydrate consistently throughout the day and especially during a workout. When working out, try taking a break and drinking 4-8 oz of water every 15-20 minutes. This ensures that you are replacing your fluids in your body consistently, effectively preventing dehydration. 
  • Monitor weight – By weighing yourself before and after a training session, you can monitor whether you are dehydrated or not. A 1-3% loss of body weight after a workout can indicate dehydration and more fluids may be necessary to re-hydrate your body.   

What Is The Best Water To Drink?

Now that we’ve gone over how beneficial it is to drink water throughout the day, the question remains, how do you know if the water you’re drinking is helping or hindering your overall health? The fact is, not all water is made the same, and you can never tell whether the water you’re drinking is actually good for you. Here are two videos which outline what to look out for when choosing a type of water for optimal hydration. 

Now that we’ve gone over how beneficial it is to drink water throughout the day, the question remains, how do you know if the water you’re drinking is helping or hindering your overall health? The fact is, not all water is made the same, and you can never tell whether the water you’re drinking is actually good for you. Here are two videos which outline what to look out for when choosing a type of water for optimal hydration. 

This first video shows the PH level of various brands of bottled water, as well as a sports drink, a soft drink and Vollara LivingWater. 

One of the most popular brands of water was 100 times more acidic than the human body at a neutral state. In addition, almost every beverage tested demonstrated an acidic or neutral profile, except for tap water which tested to be relatively high alkaline at a 6-7 on the PH test. Vollara LivingWater however, scored the highest and resulted to be the most alkaline beverage in the test. 

This video is demonstrating the oxidation reduction potential, or ORP of the same beverages in the first video. The ORP is measuring how much of an oxidant a solution is and how much of an antioxidant a solution is. What you want is a water that is more on the antioxidant side of the spectrum as oxidative water can have negative and damaging effects on tissue and have an overall negative effect on health and energy levels. 

Vollara LivingWater proves to be the most antioxidant and the most alkaline out of all the beverages tested in the experiment. 

Water may seem to all look the same, but its chemical makeup varies depending on its treatment and where it is sourced.

Vollara LivingWater Video

Vollara LivingWater comes from a trusted source and uses Direct Disk Ionization Technology to create great-tasting, filtered water that is pH-optimized, electron-rich and highly alkaline with antioxidant properties. It’s even less expensive than buying regular bottled water, not to mention it reduces water bottle waste and is better for you too. 

Choosing the right type of water is important in order to maximize hydration through the absorption of minerals and to ensure you’re drinking water that is contributing to your health. So choose your type of water carefully and be sure to hydrate regularly throughout the day and during workouts. One of the best things about drinking water is that it is so easy to implement into your daily routine, and from this simple action you can be paving the way to a better athletic performance, a sharper focus and more optimal physical health.