Water is truly the nectar of life.  Without it, we would shrivel up and die.  I know this sounds dramatic, but, folks, if this is your reality check for the day then so be it.  Drink up!
    Proper hydration is so important for a plethora of reasons.  Just the fact that our bodies are comprised of about 60% of water should be quite an indication to the significance of this magical elixir.  We need water for our muscles, brain, digestion, respiration, and our organs.  Water also helps carry nutrients and oxygen throughout the body.  Lets face it people, we can't live for more than a few days without it.
    We humans need to be super proactive in keeping our temples (aka the body) well hydrated.  We are constantly losing fluids all day long whether its from our urine, stool, sweat, skin evaporation, and even breathing.  By maintaining hydration we are doing a world of good for all systems of the body.      
    Our skin, which is our largest organ, is often a reflection of what's happening on the inside of the body.  By drinking plenty of water you are flushing out toxins which, in turn, will equate to a cleaner, softer, and less wrinkled complexion.  Water is also beneficial for our bowel function by helping to prevent constipation.  Additionally, this incredible, clear liquid is good for weight loss.  Not only does it suppress the appetite, but it helps the body burn stored fat.  As if all of these reasons are not sufficient, your liver and kidneys will thank you for remaining well quenched.  If one does not consume an adequate amount of water, your liver will be forced to help your kidneys detoxify your body and the liver already has 500 jobs a day to do.  Furthermore, dehydration is the #1 source of fatigue and we, as a culture, do not need any more obstacles preventing us from completing the already million things on our "to-do" list with any less vibrancy and vitality.
    So the take home message is grab a glass and throw a few down your gullet, but how much of this life-line of liquid do we ingest?  Well, it all depends.  The classic answer is 8- 8 oz glasses.  This amount might suffice, but its all dependent on how much you exercise, what the weather is, what state of health you're in, and whether or not you're pregnant.  Research would gather that anywhere from 8-13 glasses will keep you hydrated.  Also, keep in mind that nearly all foods contain water, especially fruits and vegetables, so pay attention to what you are consuming.  With that being said, drinks such as coffee and sodas will dehydrate you so do be conscientious when you decide to indulge.  This would be a fine time to bulk up on a bit more water to off-set the possibility of dehydration.  
    If you are confused as to whether or not you are suffering from dehydration, take a look at the color of your urine.  If its bright yellow and you haven't taken any B vitamins then you best start chuggin'.  An optimal way to start every day would be drinking a glass or two of room temperature water with lemon.  Not only does it serve as a gentle liver cleanser, but it also will boost immunity and kick off digestion.  Moreover, for those of you who do not enjoy the nectar of life, the lemon will enhance the taste of this essential fluid.   
    If lemon water doesn't float your boat, get creative.  Try adding cucumber to your water or basil with strawberries.  Other ideas might include: mint with berries, pears and ginger, watermelon, or even apples and cinnamon sticks.  If you are using herbs, mash or crush them in order to fully release their flavor.  Regardless, treat your body right and hydrate which ever way you need to get the job done.  You owe it to YOU.  Enjoy!
                                                                                                                            Wishing you the best of health and happiness,
                                                                                                                                                            Stacy xoxo


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