Our first Healthy Eating Habit is entitled “Stay Hydrated”. This refers to the importance of making sure that you drink enough water every day to keep your body working correctly. Dehydration is linked to fatigue, hunger and irritability. So, the next time you find yourself tired, hungry or grumpy, it might just be that you are dehydrated.
How much water should you drink every day? A good rule of thumb is that you should drink half your weight in ounces every day. That means if you weigh 140 pounds you should drink 70 ounces of water every day. That may seem like a lot, but it is very doable. The key is to drink small amounts of water throughout the day.
Remember, water should be your drink of choice. Coffee, soda, fruit juice, should not be drunk for thirst. If you choose to drink them, enjoy them in moderation for their taste. Here are some facts about soda and other sugary drinks that are good to know.
- 1 Coca-Cola Soda (12 fl oz) contains 155 empty calories. Empty calories come from food that is high in sugar and/or fat but low in nutrients. One can of soda has the equivalent of 9½ teaspoons of sugar.
- Soda raises your blood sugar to an artificially high level, so it gives you a temporary boost of energy. But when your blood sugar comes down, you have far less energy than when you started.
- Excessive sugar from drinking soda not only leads to unnecessary weight gain; it can also lead to diabetes.
- There are 3,500 calories in a pound. In order to lose OR gain one pound, an individual must either subtract or add 3,500 calories from their diet. That is 22.5 sodas. If you drink one soda per day, you could gain as much as 16 pounds in one year. Another way of looking at it is if you currently drink soda every day and you quit drinking, you could lose 16 pounds per year.
- About 23 minutes of walking burns the calories in 1 can of soda.
- Diet sodas aren’t much better. The chemically derived artificial sweeteners they contain (especially aspartame) may act as neurotoxins and have been linked to headaches, memory problems, anxiety, brain fog, depression, skin irritations, joint pain and more.
- Fruit juice is high in sugar too, so don’t drink too much of it and when you do, mix it with water. Whenever possible, have the fruit instead.
So remember, if you drink soda drink it occasionally for taste, not for thirst. Water is the best thing for you when you are thirsty.
Here is this week’s challenge. Calculate how much water you should drink every day by dividing your weight in pounds by two. Then drink that number in ounces every day for the next seven days. For example: if you weigh 140 pounds you should drink at least 70 ounces of water every day. That equals nine 8-ounce glasses. Try to start your day with at least 8 ounces of water first thing in the morning. This will really help you start your day right. Then if you can, try to carry a water bottle with you and constantly sip from it.
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