|Water | Abhijit Tembhekar | Wikimedia Commons|
Everyone seems to be drinking more water these days, that’s a good thing. Unfortunately though many kids are drinking flavored water drinks that are presented as healthy. You know the ones I’m talking about. They come with names like Vitamin Water and Fruit2O. Let’s not even start with the whole sports drink issue.
I am continually amazed at how manipulated we are by manufacturers. There is no other way to say this other than to just say it. Water is water period end of story. Why are they trying to fancy it up with all sorts of chemical additives for color and flavor, and why are they adding preservatives. Preservatives? What’s in water than needs preserving?
Are many of us dehydrated? I believe the answer is yes. Do we need 8 glasses of water per day? That depends on what your bio-individual needs are. If you live in a climate that causes you to lose a lot of moisture or you exercise a lot or you don’t eat high moisture foods and take in other liquids it all adds up. However I also believe that by the time we feel thirsty we are generally more dehydrated than we realize.
Dehydration is known to cause headaches, can lead to worsening asthma, hypertension and other health issues. Proper hydration is also key to helping the body eliminate toxins. That is why it’s important to make sure that we are getting enough fluids to stay well hydrated. Breathing, digesting, sweating, and excreting all cause us to lose fluids.
If what we need is to stay well hydrated what we do not need is all of the extra chemicals that come with most packaged water drinks. Not only that if you look at the label you will see that they are misleading you by claiming to only have a certain number of calories. What you need to remember is to look at the label and see how many calories are in a serving and how many servings are in a bottle. One bottle of VitaminWater has 50 calories and 13g of sugar per serving. The label purports to contain 2.5 servings per bottle. Most people I know drink the whole bottle; that means 125 calories and over 32g of sugar per bottle. And those are empty calories. Providing no nutritional value and not filling you up at all.
Let me give you a hint, there are no calories in water. If you are looking for a little flavor in your water consider adding a slice of fresh fruit, a squeeze of citrus, a slice of cucumber, or a sprig of mint. These all add a lot of flavor without adding sugar, calories, “natural flavors”, or other chemicals. Just drink water. It’s what your body needs.