Friday, August 15, 2014

Drink More Water

Quick question - How much water do you drink?

I mean, we all know it's important to drink lots of water.  We hear it on the news, read it in magazines and internet articles, and talk about it with our doctor and friends.  Yet, it can be hard to actually drink the amount of water experts tell us we need.

And, let's face it.  We feel better when we're properly hydrated.  Water is now my first line of defense around our house.

'Mom, I'm tired.'
'Drink a glass of water and lay down for a bit."

'Mom, I have a headache.'
'Drink a glass of water and let me know how you feel in 10 minutes.'

'I'm not hungry.'
'Grab a cup of water and see if that helps.'
(This is for my daughter who's medicine acts as an appetite suppressant.)

'Mom, I'm still hungry after eating everything in sight.' (Steroids are great.)
'Drink some water and let me know if you are still hungry.'

'Mom, my legs/arms/tummy/muscles hurt.'
'Drink a glass of water.'

And, I'll admit, drinking water has been a struggle for all of us until recently.  Not too many years ago, we kept all kinds of beverages in our home: Kool-aid, coke {er... soda?, pop?}, juice.  We just didn't care for drinking plain, ol' water.  Can you blame us with all those other highly sweetened drinks?  It took us a long time to wean ourselves off these other beverages and start CRAVING water.

I used to struggle to drink enough water through the day.  Now, I have some tricks up my sleeve that make it a little easier for me, and my family, get more water in our bodies daily.  Some tricks I'm going to share with you.

Eliminate Other Options

Just like in any other situation: if you don't have in the house to reach for when thirsty, you won't be able to drink it.  To say that is easy, but it really can be hard in actuality.  There were many times I would think 'Oh, we need a treat this weekend.', and I would scurry down the beverage isle in our local grocery store to pick up our favorite root beer.  I finally had to realize we were better off without it and just bypass that isle altogether.  Now we have trouble drinking more than a few sips because of the overwhelming sweetness we are no longer use to.

Add A Straw

This is such a simple thing, but it will make drinking water SO much easier.  I'm sure there are all kinds of scientific reasons for this being a help - I don't know them, though.  All I do know, is that I can drink about twice the amount of water in a day with a straw than I can just drinking from a cup without a straw.  WIN!

Add Some Flavor

Yes.  I know.  I told you to basically kick the flavored beverages to the proverbial curb earlier.  However, there are many healthy ways to add some flavor to an otherwise boring drink and still keep it natural and good for you.

  • Fresh or Frozen Fruit :  A little splash of fresh lemon, lime or even orange can make water a little more enjoyable for many people.  There are also times our family will add frozen blueberries, raspberries or strawberries.  This serves many purposes: acts as 'ice' to help keep the water cold, adds some flavor and the kids love eating the frozen fruit when the water is gone.
  • Energizing Tea:  Both the Green Tea and Pomegranate Tea have great flavor, are all natural and will give you an extra boost of energy to help you get through your day.  The Pomegranate Tea has replaced my multiple cups of coffee I used to drink every day.  I LOVE it!  Both of these are made with Matcha Green Tea which has many health benefits - high in antioxidants, helps with stress, increases metabolism without negative side-effects and promotes overall health.
  • Performance:  Extra hydration is needed on those hot or extra active days.  Shaklee Performance helps us stay hydrated while maintaining blood-glucose levels without added preservatives, artificial flavors or sweeteners.
Find the Right Temperature

There is nothing I like better than a tall glass of ice water on a hot summer day.  But, when the snow is flying outside and I'm standing next to the fire in the living room trying to stay warm, it's the absolute last thing I want.  So, what to do?  I've learned a cup of water in the microwave for 30 seconds or so can make water a good temperature for me to drink during the winter.  It takes a little getting used to, but at least I'm drinking it.  Also, both the Energizing Teas are equally good hot as they are cold.

Measure It

To help me know how much (or how little) water I've had through the day, I always use the same cup.    Since it holds 2 cups, or 16 oz, of water each time I refill it, I'm able to easily keep track of the amount of water I'm consuming.  Much easier than using multiple glasses and only being able to guess at how much each holds.

Hopefully, some of these ideas will help you increase your water intake like they have helped us.  Do you have other suggestions that have helped you?

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