Lectures, conversations and advice regarding the intake of water stimulate much speculation, so this week’s article will attempt to “bust” some myths.
It now seems to be the norm to carry a bottle of water as if a permanent extension of one’s arm! But is this liquid that one drinks more hype than fact?
In the first place, without expanding on the intricate physiology of the bodies water needs, water is essential to maintain body temperature and the volume of one’s blood.
Although “water fanatics” in all good faith attempt to flood the body with water, this is absorbed relatively slowly and is mostly extra–cellular [whereas intra-cellular represents 40% of the bodies water] and it is not generally known that water moves in and out of all cells via chemical reactions.
Readers are no doubt familiar with the term electrolytes, the intake of which are essential especially after a bout of diahorraea and / or vomiting.
Electrolytes are chemicals which stimulate an electrical current and contain essential minerals like magnesium, potassium, sodium and so on.
When certain minerals are lacking in the system or if dehydration is present, cramping is a typical reaction. The muscle in question goes into a spasm and a very unpleasant tightening occurs. Even after relaxation of the muscle, pain can persist. Gentle circular movements across the affected area will assist relaxation. Some health practitioners recommend a warm Epsom salts bath, the magnesium content having an external affect on muscles.
Some questions for readers now follow :
Do coffee and tea count towards hydration?
Yes in a way, as caffeine is a diuretic causing water to be excreted and the body will compensate by needing intake of liquid.
Should one drink liquids prior to being thirsty?
No, as in most healthy adults thirst is a reliable indicator of fluid needs.
Is the intake of coconut water better than water?
No, not so at all. In fact, a company that claimed that coconut water is “Super-hydrating” had to settle a law suit for making false claims.
Will drinking extra water will keep ones skin moist?
Not so, although dry skin does indicate a form of dehydration. Including healthy fats in one’s diet from fish, nuts etc are an advantage as these act as building blocks for the cell walls that in turn retain moisture.
The outer epidermal skin, due to less humidity in the winter air, will feel taut and drier and be crying out for moisture. Fine vertical lines usually seen on the cheek area are signs of dehydration.
Matsimela’s aloe facial range, specifically the moisturizer ' will not only have a hydrating effect but act as a barrier against the harsher winter air, keeping the skin well hydrated for the colder months ahead.