We all have heard it: “You need more water.” “Water is important to your health.” “Have a headache- drink more water.” Yet many of us still don’t get enough.
I have personally met people who state they simply don’t drink water. This leaves me completely bumfuzzled, but I digress. With that being said, water is essential to survival. All of our water needs vary, but for the most part, at least 64 ounces is needed per day to keep us hydrated and healthy.
If you believe you aren’t getting enough and are noticing any of the following signs, it may be time to finally start incorporating more water into your day and stop putting your health and well-being on the backburner.
1. Your skin is dry.
Since our skin is our largest organ, it may come as no surprise that it needs to stay hydrated. One of the earliest signs of dehydration is dry skin. And if your skin isn’t fully hydrated, it is hard for your body to keep it clean and detoxed. In turn, you could end up with infections, rashes, or breakouts.
2. You have dry eyes.
Being dehydrated can cause your eyes to become dry and bloodshot. Your body needs water to hydrate your tear ducts, which are necessary to keep your eyes and visual health intact.
3. You have a dry mouth.
I’m not just talking thirsty dry, I mean it’s dry. Saliva is necessary to keep your mouth clean, and a continuously dry mouth can lead to tooth decay.
4. You have constant headaches.
Everyone has a headache here and there, but one of the major signs of dehydration is a headache. Since dehydration can cause lower blood flow and oxygen to your brain, it can also cause inflammation. Inflammation in the brain is dangerous, and at its best could cause headaches. At its worst, it can cause brain damage.
5. You have bad breath.
A lack of saliva caused by dehydration leads to increased bacteria and acid in the mouth. Drinking water keeps saliva production up. But, when you are dehydrated, this bacteria grows and leaves a nasty smell.
6. Your urine looks strange.
You can simply look at your urine to see if you need more water. Dark and yellow to amber urine shows dehydration because water is needed to flush toxins from the body. If you are dehydrated, you also may urinate less frequently.
7. You are constipated.
When you are dehydrated, you may not be able to produce as many bowel movements as needed. You may only produce small lumps and your stool may appear dry. Water aids in digestion, so to remain regular, you need to drink more water.
8. You feel hungry and thirsty all the time.
Being thirsty may be an obvious sign- but the thirst I’m referring to is an unquenchable thirst that takes over. Dehydration also causes severe hunger – and can lead you to want to constantly eat. Try drinking more water if you find yourself constantly reaching for snacks.
9. You have joint pain.
Your cartilage and spinal discs need water. They are made up of around 80% water, so water is necessary to keep your bones from grinding together. Not only can a lack of water cause pain- it can also lead to bone damage.
10. You have decreased muscle mass.
Much like other parts of your body, your muscles are made up of water. Because of this, when you take in less water, you lose muscle mass. Water also prevents muscle fatigue, inflammation, and the soreness associated with weightlifting.
11. You stay sick.
Water detoxifies our bodies and flushes disease and toxins from our bodies. To heal from disease and sickness, we need water.
12. You stay tired.
When our body lacks water from outside sources, it pulls them from inside ones, like your blood. This causes oxygen to decrease in the body and blood, which will leave you tired. If you experience an afternoon crash regularly- it’s time to drink more water.