Article and Video By Dr. Willie T. Ong (Internist-Cardiologist)
Here are the benefits of drinking water:
1. Water prevents kidney stones. The most common cause of kidney stones is not drinking enough water. Since water dissolves the substances that form stones in the urine, drinking 12 glasses daily helps treat kidney stones.
2. Water treats urinary tract infection. The more water you drink, the more you will urinate. Drinking lots of water will help flush out harmful bacteria from your bladder.
3. Water helps patients with diarrhea by preventing dehydration.
4. Water helps reduce fever. For symptoms of flu, water can help lower your body temperature when you urinate the “heat” out of your body. If you’re sick, drink more water for you to recover faster.
5. Water helps treat cough and colds, sore throat, and respiratory infections. Water helps loosen sticky phlegm.
6. Water reduces heartburn. Taking 2-3 gulps of water every 20 minutes or so can help flush the stomach acid away. Bananas and water are effective alternatives to taking antacids. Try it.
7. Water prevents constipation and its complications. Too little water can harden the stools and lead to hemorrhoids and diverticulosis, a disease of the large bowel. Drink water and eat lots of vegetables to soften your stools.
8. Water keeps you alert and energetic. If you’re dehydrated, your blood is literally thicker. This makes it harder for the blood to circulate. As a result, the brain can become less active and you can feel confused and fatigued.
9. Water helps reduce weight. By drinking a glass or two of water before a meal, you will lessen the amount of food you can take in order to feel full. Water has zero calories and will not make you fat.
10. Water keeps your skin soft and radiant.
The Proper Way To Drink Water:
1. Drink water when you wake up. You are naturally thirsty or dehydrated in the morning. Drinking water in the morning helps flush out the toxins that have accumulated all night.
2. Drink 8 to 12 glasses a day.
3. Drink little by little throughout the day. It is preferable to sip water throughout the day rather than to drink two glasses all at once. This will lessen the stress on the heart.
4. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink water. By the time you feel thirsty, you’re probably already 2 glasses below your normal water needs. Elderly people are also less sensitive to the body’s need for water.
5. Drink water, not soft drinks, alcohol or coffee.
6. Train children to drink water.
7. Drink more when it’s hot. People living in hot climates need to drink more water. They are more prone to develop kidney stones compared to those living in cooler regions.
8. Drink more as you exercise. When you exercise, you need to drink more water to compensate for fluid loss. Go for an extra 500 ml of water for a 30-minute to 1-hour exercise.
9. Drink more when you’re sick. Even though you don’t feel like it, you really need to drink more water to help your body recover from various infections. If you’re dehydrated, you’ll feel much worse.
10. Drink more if you’re pregnant. Women who are expecting or breast-feeding need additional fluids to stay hydrated. Drink 10 cups of fluids daily and women who breast-feed may take in about 13 cups of fluids a day. Good luck.