Your body consists of lots of water, and many bodily functions depend on the fluid. How much you need, depends. For instance, if you exercise a lot or if you’re pregnant, you need to drink more. On average, it’s best to drink at least 1,5 to 2 liters a day.
If you don’t drink enough, your body has several ways of telling you so. Before you grab a painkiller when you feel a headache coming up, or before you think you’re having a snack attack: these signals suggest your body is simply longing for more water.
Obviously: if you’re thirsty, you need to drink water. However, the body doesn’t always tell you you’re thirsty. The frequency of your toilet visits is telling. On average, you should go 4 to 10 times a day. If you go less frequently, you don’t drink enough.
2 Trouble focussing
If you don’t drink enough, your brain isn’t able to function optimally. This makes it harder to focus. A dose of cafeine may seem just what you need, but a simple glass of water is a better option.
Before you open the fridge for the xxth time today, just have a glass of water to find out if it’s really food you need. It might be thirst. Your brain isn’t always able to tell the difference, so it gives a hunger signal while all you need is some water.
If you often have a headache or even migraine, it might be a sign you’re not drinking enough water. Scientists aren’t sure what the connection between the two is, but for many people, headaches are less frequent when they start drinking more.
5 Bad breath
Sure, if you just had a pizza with extra garlic on it, it’s wise to chew on a leaf of mint to hide the intense smell. But if you’re having a bad breath for no reason, a lack of hydration may be the cause. The bacteria living in your mouth multiply more quickly in a dry environment. Having a few glasses of water helps to restore the natural balance of your saliva, which has an antibacterial effect.
6 Lack of energy
Feeling listless? For almost every bodily function, water is needed. If you don’t drink enough, your energy level decreases.
Another ailment you can really, really do without: constipation. Water is like a lubricant for the bowels. If you hardly go for a number two – or you spend more time at the toilet than you’d like – drinking more water can really help.
Text: Sanne Eva Dijkstra