Water is essential to human and all other life on Earth. On any given day, about 75 percent of Americans experience symptoms of chronic dehydration. The lack of water can not only give you headaches and dry skin, but it also can impair brain function. Just 1 to 2 percent dehydration can affect you adversely, and it doesn’t take long to reach the danger zone. Here are four easy ways to make sure you drink enough water to stay safely hydrated throughout your day.
1. Keep a glass of water at your kitchen table or countertop
“In sight, in mind” is just as true as “out of sight, out of mind.”
Keeping a bottle of water available on your kitchen counter or a table you walk past every day is the easiest way to remember to take a drink. You can get a refill in the morning and sip throughout the rest of the day.
2. Invest in a sturdy, attractive reusable water bottle
United States landfills have 2 million tons of plastic water bottle waste, and globally, humans purchase 1 million plastic bottles per minute, 91 percent of which don’t get recycled (source). Much of it ends up in the ocean, where it causes further ills for humans and animals. On the bright side, since refilling a reusable water bottle is easier than it’s ever been, it’s worth investing in one you can use thousands of times.
You’ll want to purchase a water bottle that appeals personally to you and comes in an attractive color. Buy a bottle that you find attractive and appealing. The more you enjoy what you’ve bought, the more likely you are to use it. That will spell out to significant ROI, financially as well as physically, and you’ll be using less plastic every single day. Drinking more water will now provide you with a financial ROI as well as greater health.
3. Request water at every restaurant you go to
When eating out, you’ll find that restaurants naturally try to persuade you to purchase flavored beverages. That is because those sweet drinks make them money. They make more money and it’s more likely to cause you to order more food, since sugar prompts the brain to consume more calories, so you order more food, even when your body has already maxed out on “empty” calories. This leads to a cycle of buying more food, even when your body has already maxed out on “empty” calories.
Water at restaurants is free nearly everywhere, and water helps you digest your food more efficiently. It will also mitigate a glucose spike from your food, providing you with long-lasting energy well after your meal. Also, you can virtually eliminate any constipation with regular water consumption and an appropriate amount of dietary fiber.
4. Play the “Water Drinking Game”
As silly as it sounds, the water drinking game is an effortless way to drink more water. All that’s required is a piece of paper and pen to keep track of whenever you drink four to eight ounces of water. Keep the piece of paper in a conspicuous location, such as by your calendar or in your kitchen. If possible, you can even create a separate calendar for water drinking. The key is to make sure it doesn’t overlap with other calendar events, so as not to clutter your goal.
As you place a checkmark in the calendar square for each cup of water you drink daily, you’ll be encouraged as you see how much progress you’re making. Having a visual reminder in front of you reminds you your new habit has momentum. Plus, you’ll continue to feel more enlivened and healthy as you continue drinking water.
These small steps, practiced diligently over time, will create an effortless habit in you to drink more water. You can also ask a friend to join you on any of these tips for additional emotional support. Pick your favorite tip, and get started today.