CLEVELAND CLINIC – If you started dieting in the new year, it’s important to make sure you’re drinking enough water too.
Not only can it help with weight loss, but it’s vital for our overall health.
But, how much do you actually need?
“Our requirements for fluid and for hydration and water, it’s based on gender, it’s based on activity level, our age, and even the environment in which we live,” explained Kristin Kirkpatrick, RD, registered dietitian for Cleveland Clinic.
Kirkpatrick said signs you’re not drinking enough water can include feeling tired, lightheaded, dizzy or getting a headache.
You may also notice you aren’t urinating as often, have dark-colored urine, a dry mouth, sugar cravings or hunger pangs.
To help stay hydrated, she suggests carrying a water bottle with you wherever you go — that way you’re always reminded.
And you don’t just have to drink water, there are other ways to get fluids, like with soup, decaffeinated coffee, herbal tea and water rich foods.
“Lettuces, spinach, melons, those are all great examples of foods that give us that hydration as well. So its not just about having the water and downing it, it’s also about how our diet can contribute to better hydration,” Kirkpatrick said.
If you’re not a big fan of drinking just plain water, you can always flavor it with fruit, vegetables, or even herbs.