Friday, August 3, 2012

August Challenge!!!!

Do you know what vital nutrient makes up around 70% of your body?  Water!!!!!  So, this is your nutrition challenge for the month of August- drink more water!!!!

Let's breakdown the water in our bodies:  as babies we are 75-80% water; as we age it decrease to 60-65% for men and 50-60% for women; the human brain is 85% water, bones are around 22%  water, muscles consist of 75% water, and blood consists of 80-85% water. 

Now, what does water do for our bodies:  it transports nutrients and oxygen to the cells, moisturizes the air in your lungs, increases your metabolism, protects our organs, helps your organs to absorb nutrients better, regulates your body temperature, detoxifies the body, and protects and moisturizes our joints.  There are also many benefits of drinking water including:  it helps you to lose weight by flushing out the by-products of fat breaking down in your system and by increasing your metabolism, it helps relieve headaches, improves the appearance of your skin, helps your brain to be more alert and focused, gives you more energy and helps you to exercise more and better, helps with digestion, prevents cramps and muscle strains, protects against illness, helps protect against certain cancers like bladder and colon.

What happens when you don't drink enough water?  Not drinking enough water makes your body dehydrated.  The last sign your body gives that you are dehydrated is a dry mouth.  How many people don't get a drink of water until they have a dry mouth?  You are probably dehydrated to a certain extent often.  Dehydration can cause migraines, fatigue, dry skin, cramps, constipation, irregular heart rate and blood pressure, and death.

How much water should you drink?  Well, that depends on how much you exercise, if you drink caffeine, are pregnant, live at a high altitude, live in a dry climate, your weather is extremely hot or cold, have kidney disease, take certain medications, etc.    For instance, for every cup of caffeine you drink you need to drink 12-16 ounces of water to counteract the dehydrating effects of caffeine.  So, a good starting point is to take your weight and divide it in half, and that's how many ounces of water to drink.  For example:  a 120 pound woman would start with 60 ounces of water a day.  Then she would add in water while exercising and water for the caffeine she drinks, etc.  There are calculators online that you can google to find out, depending on the above factors, how much you should be drinking.  The point is: you need to eliminate sodas and sugary drinks, and drink more water!!!!!

How's your fitness regiment coming along?  Here's a workout for you to do at home:  to warm up go outside and run around your house 10 times; then do 25 squats (with or without weights), 10 push ups, 25 jumping jacks, 1 minute of mountain climbers, and 25 stomach crunches.  Then repeat this 3 more times.  Make sure you have clearance from your physician to exercise!!!

Have a great weekend!!!

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