What’s your favorite kind of water? You may think that’s a silly question, because water is just water. Right? Wrong. The basic chemical composition may be the same, but when it comes to taste, there are as many different kinds of water as there are places supplying it. And that, for me is where the real problem with drinking water comes in.
Our bodies contain more water than anything else. The actual percentage of water varies depending on gender, weight, age, and a lot of other factors – but the bottom line is our bodies need water to survive. Water contributes to all the chemical processes inside us. Water is also one of the main ways our bodies remove toxins, waste and even heat from our systems through sweat and urine. Those systems only work when we put enough water back in so everything can stay in balance.
So what’s your favorite kind of water? If you say “tea-flavored” or “coffee-flavored” or even “diet soda-flavored” I think you’re just fooling yourself. Those things aren’t water. Your body needs pure H2O, not coffee, soda or even sports drinks. My personal philosophy is that if I can’t pronounce some of the ingredients, I don’t want to drink it.
Now, if you’re saying, “I don’t like the taste of water”, I’ll admit that I used to agree. Water didn’t taste good to me. What I finally figured out is that I just hadn’t found the right kind of water. Different kinds of bottled water don’t all taste the same. The source of the water as well as the filtering process all contribute to the taste.
I taste tested a lot of waters before I found my personal favorite. I finally landed on Voss water bottled in Norway. I get mine in glass bottles from Whole Foods because I prefer glass over plastic. They’re not quite as handy to carry around, but I like the taste and not having to worry about chemicals in the plastic bottles. I also like that my Voss water contains minerals that my body needs.
I’m not saying you should dump whatever kind of water you’ve been drinking and switch to Voss. But I am saying that you need to take the time to find water that tastes good to you. If it tastes good, you’ll drink it. That’s the important part.
My dietician tells me to drink 72 ounces of water every day – which is quite a lot of water. I have found it’s less intimidating to think about drinking six bottles a day rather than looking at one giant container. Get a sharpie and number the bottles for each day to help you keep track. If you are drinking alcohol or other things that act as a diuretic to flush water out of your body, you’ll need to drink even more water to compensate.
And don’t think you can get the same benefits by guzzling most of your daily water at night. Your body needs a steady level of water all day long. Plus, nobody wants to wake up for extra trips to the bathroom. On the flip side, it’s also important to keep track of how much you drink so you don’t drink too much water. If you’re not sure how much water is right for you, talk to your doctor.
Once you start drinking enough water I think you’ll be surprised at how much better you’ll feel. I know I did. Drinking water gives me an energy boost that no amount of caffeine can equal. And even better, I don’t have the drop in energy later in the day like I used to drinking coffee. I’ve also found that I can think more clearly when I’m well hydrated, and it’s easier to maintain my weight.
It all boils down to listening to what your body is telling you. Your taste buds may take a little time to adjust, but the rest of your body will be performing at peak levels when you give it the water it needs.
Michelle King Robson (pronounced robe-son) is one of the nation's leading women's health and wellness advocates. She is the Founder, Chairperson and CEO of EmpowHER, one of the fastest-growing and largest social health companies dedicated exclusively to women's health and wellness. In 2011 EmpowHER reached more than 60 million women onsite and through syndication expects to reach more than 250 million in 2012.