When to Drink Water
We are the most dehydrated when we wake up in the morning, and our body is in the most need of fluids to flush out the toxins that the liver has been throwing off all night as it processed the food and drinks from the day before. I recommend drinking 1/3 of the amount of your water intake BEFORE you even have breakfast, coffee or tea. (So for the example above, she would drink 92/3, or ~30 ounces of water before her tea. It is the very first thing to pass your lips each morning!)
Ideally this water is room temperature, or better yet warmed slightly, with a squeeze of lemon. Put a little honey or real maple syrup in it if it helps you get it down. Two reasons for this:
1) Your body needs it for detoxification first thing in the morning. Bad.
2) The more water you drink in the first part of the day the less you will have to catch up with later on, when you are busy and running around. Its just more practical to down it while you are still home. I’m sure you know that drinking a lot of water in the evening will usually have you up at midnight pee-ing. Which interferes with the precious beauty sleep. (sleep is just about as important as water! but that’s in week 3!)
3) Drink the second 1/3 of your water by NOON. So for our example above, that’s another 30 ounces pre-noon. Being well hydrated by midday prevents that afternoon energy slump (when its easy to reach for a coffee or something sugary to perk us up).
When Not to Drink Water.
With Meals Drinking more than a few small sips of water with meals dilutes the digestive juices and interferes with complete digestion. (Remember when we talk about digestion–its not just how your tummy feels. Good digestion is the key to weight loss and vibrant skin..the effects trickle down.)
Especially don’t drink cold water or drinks with meals. It solidifies any fats or oils that you have eaten, making them harder to digest. Also the intestines will not accept anything from the stomach until it is body temperature or higher. If ice cold food is in the stomach, digestion takes longer Drink water up to 30 minutes before or after meals. Ideally, no liquid with your meals, or if you must, just a sip here and there. Other than pre and post meal, anytime is a good time to drink water!
How to Drink Water
Ideally in glass or metal versus plastic. Especially in hot weather, the soft plastics in bottles begin to leech into the water. Hard plastic Nalgene bottles help, but glass or metal is best. Also please remember to store any 5 gallon jugs of water you may have delivered out of direct sunlight.
It is also important to sip water througout the day vs. gulping it down. The body can really only process 4-6 ounces of water at a time, so drink about that whenever you think of it. This really helps in between meals to curb hunger. Often when we think we’re hungry–we’re really just thirsty.
Choose Your Vessel & Play the Water Game!
* Make water drinking a fun ritual. Choose a bottle you like, know how many ounces it is, and how many you need to drink in a day. I prefer Voss Norwegian Water Bottles, they are glass sleek, sexy, and fit in my cup holder. And they are 31 ounces. Perfect for my typical 92 ounce requirement, I have to drink 3. I buy them at Whole Foods. The best part is if I accidentally leave one at the gym or a meeting–its’ only 2.99 to replace it, not $15-20 for a fancier Sigg or other bottle
* *If at your desk or at home, put your water in a goblet or large wine glass w/ a slice of lemon or lime. It feels elegant and is respectful to the water!
* *Recognize that at first increasing your water intake is NOT going to come naturally. I recommend tracking it someway. If you are a gadgety person, www.livestrong.com has a great ipad app to help track all sorts of things, water included. Waterlogged or Water your Body are great ones for iphone or Droid phones. Or you can always just jot in a notebook.
* *Make it a game, or a contest with yourself, during your makeover month ..Put sticky stars on a calendar every day you drink your water needs. Or mark it in some way.At the end of the month, if you got 90 % of your days in (or whatever % you want to set for yourself), then reward yourself with something special (not food or drink related). A pedicure?
a new lipgloss? a smaller size of shorts for summer? (If you fulfill your body’s water needs for a month, I can almost guarantee you will lose 3-4 pounds from this alone, with no other changes!)
What about having to pee all the time?
Ok, I hear this one a lot. Here’s the deal: If you have been shorting your body of water for awhile, its true, your bladder has gotten used to holding smaller amounts of liquid. But the good news is that it can stretch and learn to hold more. Most people who start out on the consuming more water path give up after a few days because of this. In my experience, it takes about 2-3 weeks for this to go away. You just have to deal with it, reminding yourself that it is temporary and the long term benefits to your waistline and your skin are worth a few extra trips to the bathroom.