Sure water is the liquid bread of life. We all know that humans must drink water to survive. But with all the liquid alternatives crowding grocery shelves – from energy drinks to sugary sodas, how to we make sure we drink enough of that plain and tasteless liquid every day to maintain good health?
Factoid of the times: A new study found that one in five American children and teenagers drank no water on any given day, substituting sweetened beverages instead. Sinful, right?
Fortunately, we have compiled this little list of ways to keep yourself gurgling enough water (about 32 ounces per day). That’s about eight glasses, or 12 cups for women and 15 for men. To make sure you consume this amount, try these tricks:
- Stay focused on all the good things water does for your health. This includes carrying nutrients and oxygen to cells, lessen the burden on kidneys and liver by flushing, regulating body temperature and lubricating joints.
- Make it a game. Use large reusable bottles and mark them with time-oriented goals. Fill two of the large (about 33 ounce) bottles and mark them with the amount you want to consume by each hour of the day. It’s good if you can drink about half of one big bottle the first thing after you wake. And drinking water before every meal will help control your appetite.
- Change it up. Instead of going for sugary substitutes, add a splash of juice, lemon, orange or fruit. Drink it out of something different or fun. How about boxed water, for instance? Anything to take the boredom out of plain old water.
- Drink from a straw. Studies show you’re more likely to swallow more at a time when you drink from a straw vs. sipping from the bottle. Plus the straw makes water more accessible. You’re more likely to sip from a straw rather than going to all the effort of unscrewing a cap and lifting a bottle to our lips. Lazy, but true.
- Eat more spicy foods. It’s a bit counterintuitive but by eating more spicy foods you’ll naturally wish to drink more water. Jalapenos anyone?
- Try an app. If you need frequent electronic reminders to take a drink, there are plenty of apps for that. Gulps is one of the more popular ones. It sends reminders to your phone and provides a visual of how much you have drank so far.