It’s no secret that I am extremely passionate about the environment and an enthusiastic advocate for water. As a whole-hearted believer in the elimination of plastic, I don’t remember a time when I haven’t had a reusable water bottle by my side. This trusted companion has been a life changer — helping me stay hydrated, yes, but it has kept me committed to being environmentally friendly and led me on a rewarding entrepreneurial journey.
Over the last five years, my passion and the subsequent creation of our S’well products have culminated in a mission-driven approach to business. We partner with organizations like UNICEF to bring clean water to areas in desperate need and constantly seek new ways to lessen our imprint on the planet. These efforts have recently been extended in a new direction. One focused on the power of hydration — a key factor in helping us all thrive by living happier, healthier and more productive lives.
THE POWER OF HYDRATION
Drinking water is perhaps one of the most undervalued, yet essential, elements to living well. Staying hydrated helps fight disease, aids weight loss and detoxifies our bodies. It supports proper digestion and brightens our skin. Not to mention, drinking at least eight glasses a day can help lower cortisol levels to reduce stress and increase productivity.
But those of us who are lucky enough to live and work in places with regular access to safe drinking water don’t drink enough of it. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 40% percent of adults drink less than four cups of water a day!
This is simply not enough.
Studies, like those conducted at the University of Connecticut’s Human Performance Laboratory, prove that even mild dehydration can impact a person’s mood, ability to think and their physical well-being. In fact, experts say we are already one to two percent dehydrated by the time we feel thirsty. Imagine if we started saying “I’m dehydrated” instead of “I’m thirsty” in conversations. We might take our state of thirst more seriously.
With such a simple solution to living a better, healthier life, why wouldn’t we take advantage of the resources at our fingertips and drink more water?
CREATING A HYDRATION HABIT
Our challenge is to encourage more water consumption by helping individuals not only continue to gain access to clean water when needed, but also raise awareness of its benefits and, of course, offer the best reusable container on the market to drink as much of it as possible.
We know that one healthy life choice begets another. The American Psychology Association recommends “starting small” and “tackling one behavior at a time” when making changes. This means even the simplest behavioral changes can create a big impact on drinking more water.
For example, instead of grabbing a cup from the office kitchen when you feel thirsty, you can keep one in your work area to act as a constant reminder to fill it. Or each time you step away from your desk, make sure to stop by the water cooler before returning. While out of the office, simply keeping a refillable container with you at all times will make staying hydrated easier.
If you already have a water routine in place, perhaps it’s time to assess its effectiveness. Take the time to determine if it is maximizing your consumption or if there are other steps you can take to drink more water, more often. Hydration helps me thrive. My S’well bottle is always by my side and acts as a constant reminder — dare I say a challenge — to keep thriving by drinking more water. I encourage you to find a hydration habit that makes water work for you.
Your body, head and heart will thank you.
Originally published at medium.com