Nutritionists, Doctors and Dentists agree that water is the best beverage for your overall health. But what makes water so special? Water has many properties that contribute to its reputation as the healthiest drink of all.
Our bodies need water to perform every essential function for life, and they loose a lot of water throughout the day, so we have to keep replacing those fluids to make everything tick. Other drinks, like soda pop and juice, contain sugar, sodium and/or caffeine which can actually worsen dehydration. Water provides clean hydration, without any of the extra ingredients that make you thirstier. To learn more about how proper hydration affects your body read this article by Dr. Len Kravitz of the University of New Mexico.
Few things help with maintaining weight like drinking enough water. For one thing, our bodies can often mistake thirst for hunger, so staying hydrated can reduce food cravings throughout the day and increase feelings of fullness after meals. Water also has zero calories, which means choosing water instead of caloric beverages like juice, milk or soda pop can greatly reduce ones daily calorie intake. Not only that but studies (such as this one from the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism) have concluded that drinking water improves metabolism, which means the foods we eat are digested more efficiently. All of that means getting enough water is key in healthy weight loss, proper nutrition and living a balanced life.
The American Dental Association has a fantastic article explaining all the reasons why water is great for your teeth. Specifically, most other drinks contain excess sugar. Plaque, tartar, cavities and tooth decay all come from sugars sticking to your teeth. Even milk – which most consider to be a healthy beverage – isn’t great for teeth, because it can leave natural sugars called lactose on teeth. Not only is water completely sugar free, but water helps wash away the sugars that cause dental problems, making water one of the best things in the world for your smile.
Adding a health boost with water can be easy and tasty too. If you’re a soda junkie like me, try drinking carbonated water with a few lemon wedges squeezed in. You’ll get that satisfying tingle from the carbonation, without any of the calories or caffeine from soda. If you’re a regular juice drinker, diluting juice glasses about halfway will minimize the sugar and maximize the hydration. Of course these tricks mean your drink of choice won’t be as sweet, but soon you’ll find yourself adjusting to drinks with less sugar, which is a health boost in itself. Milk is best when drunk with meals and followed by a big glass of H2O to rinse out the leftover sugar, boost your metabolism and hydrate your body.