True confession: I would rather drink soda than water given just about any situation. But what happens when I do that? I feel terrible! Too much caffeine, dry mouth, sore joints, headaches, dry skin, and the list goes on.
So the reality is that with mindful eating I look at how that affects my body and I say, “What do I need?” and the answer is WATER!
Drinking water is just a habit I have to be mindful of. It’s very easy for me to get busy and not pay attention to my water intake – and I know I’m not the only one! Here are a few ways you can add more water (and I do these!) when it isn’t your top favorite.
Get a Fancy Glass
This for me is one of the best ways to make sure I get water. Your glass doesn’t have to be fancy, but it can be special in some way. We have a very naughty cat living in our house who likes to knock over water glasses, so my special glass has a lid and straw (by the way, drinking through a straw helps you to drink more – that’s a bonus #6 for you!).
But just by having that out I remember to fill it up, carry it around with me and I end up drinking more water. In fact, that glass is reserved only for water – no other beverage. It’s also pretty and I love it.
Use a Convenient Dispenser
When we first got a fridge that had a water dispenser on the front of the door, I couldn’t believe how much more water everyone in the family started to drink. Just having water that was fairly cool, filtered, and very convenient made it easier to make that choice.
If you don’t have that available, consider a water filter pitcher with a spout that can store cold, filtered water in the fridge. You’ll be surprised to see how much more you drink when it tastes great, is nice and cold, and is convenient.
Choose Watery Foods and Drinks
Did you know that all of your water doesn’t have to come in its purest form? Your body can use water from fruits, vegetables, and other water rich foods. When you consume those you’ll add water to your daily intake.
Additionally, beverages that don’t contain caffeine can also help add to your water consumption. One of my favorite treats is iced herbal tea in the summer. When I get tired of plain ole water, I reach for that instead.
Add It to Your Order
When you’re at a restaurant, ask for water. Seems simple enough! As you eat your meal your server will keep filling it up. Often, I order a flavored beverage and water when I’m in a restaurant and I alternate so that I don’t miss out on hydration.
Kick Start Your Day
The first think I drink in the morning when I wake up is a glass of water. I started doing that intentionally in the beginning, but now I notice that when I wake up I am thirsty and crave it – because I need it after having gone several hours without any.
If you make it a point to start your day with water it can help you to develop the habit and actually help you to want more water throughout the day.
How Much Water Should You Drink?
For years we’ve all heard that we need eight glasses of water each day. The truth is that there’s no one number that’s right for everyone. A lot depends on your activity level, climate, health conditions, and more.
So, it’s a good rule of thumb to drink eight glasses a day, but some people need more and some need less. If you pay attention to your body’s signals you’ll know when you need to drink.
For example, if you feel thirsty that’s your body telling you to drink. But sometimes the feeling of thirst can also be confused with hunger. If you feel hungry, you might try drinking a glass of water and see how you feel. You may also have low energy or a headache if you’re starting to get dehydrated.
Mindful eating is about staying in tune with your body and trusting that it knows what you need. It’s important to pay attention to how you feel and what messages your body sends you.
Sometimes I just want a soda. And when I do – I get one and I drink it with enjoyment. I just try to make sure not to miss out on the water that I need as well.