The Christmas decorations are up, and many are already donning their favourite Christmas jumper. It’s the start of Christmas parties, gatherings and a time to indulge in a glass or two of your favourite tipple, after all ‘tis the season to be jolly’. To help you stay healthy and feeling jolly this Christmas, it is really important to check in with your body to ensure that you are hydrated.
A few weeks ago, I shared the importance of staying hydrated. Here is a little reminder:
Water makes up around 50% of your body and is needed to:
- enable each cell in your body to function properly
- support digestion
- support your kidneys to flush toxins out of your body
- transport nutrients across your body
- lubricate and cushion your organs
- help to regulate your body temperature
How much water should you drink?
On average women should drink around 3.5 pints (2 litres) and men 4 pints (2.5 litres) a day. This calculation is further influenced by your age, physical activity level, climate and also whether you are pregnant. Other factors to consider is whether you are drinking caffeine and/or alcohol as both of these act as a diuretic and thereby remove water from the body.
It can be quite challenging to drink just water during the colder months, so herbal teas are good alternatives to ensure you stay hydrated. Pukka Herbs does a really lovely range of teas available in most supermarkets.
How can you tell if you are dehydrated?
Generally, the body will present with headaches, a feeling of thirst, lower levels of concentration and fatigue. You might also notice that you are urinating less and only passing small amounts of urine and that your urine is darker in colour.
A good way to check whether you are dehydrated is to check the colour of your urine using the infographic below, which can help you decide whether you need to drink more water.
Five Tips for staying hydrated this Christmas
- Start your day with a glass of water as soon as you wake up before breakfast.
- Drink herbal teas before you eat food, rather than coffee as not only will this hydrate your body, but also support blood sugar balance.
- Flavour your water with fresh fruit or herbs, such as mint or even rosemary/thyme. Fresh fruit make a delicious infusion and can deliver other health benefits to your body.
- Keep a bottle of water with you at all times, which can also act as a reminder to drink throughout the day and ensure to fill it up when it is empty
- Balance out your alcoholic drinks with a glass of water, this will not only ensure that you are hydrated, but by golly it can also help prevent that dreaded hangover.
Enjoy the festive period.