Why is Water Good for You? – Diabetic
Why is Water Good for You?
Why is Water Good for you, in this article addresses specifically those people with prediabetes or type 2 diabetes. This is especially important for someone with diabetes, though it may seem like a no-brainer.
How Much Water is in Your Body?
Our bodies consist of between 50 to 65% water on average, depending on your age, and body type. Other parts of our body and water content:
- The brain and heart are near 73%
- Muscles and kidneys are at 79%
- Skin contains roughly 64%
- Blood is over 90% water
- Bones contain 31%.
Adults on average, lose about 2.6 liters of water per day through multiple ways’ including breathing, perspiration, and urinating. With the high percentage of water in our body and the loss of it, it is important to replenish it. Because high blood sugar levels cause our bodies to flush excesses, diabetics often suffer from dehydration. Read on to learn how symptoms and problems can cascade, and the answer to why is water good for you?
What Happens When Diabetics Drink Too Little?
Why is water good for you? Diabetes can make you become accustomed to being thirsty, so you don’t feel it as acutely. You have already learned that our bodies are made up of about 2/3 water, and how much we lose daily. A diabetic that does not get enough water is at a greater risk for developing eczema or other skin diseases caused by dryness. Dry skin is maybe the most recognizable symptom of too little water in your system.
Your kidneys produce urine that helps to flush your body of sugar and other wastes. When you are dehydrated the kidneys get water from one of your bodies systems, causing the kidneys to work harder. Complications will arise if your bodily organs are dehydrated. Outdoor enthusiasts know that dehydration can cause dizziness and fatigue, and even make you forget where you are.
Tip: Too high blood sugar and not enough water in your system causes big problems. Your kidneys will remove water from your blood and other internal organs to make urine to flush the excess sugar.
Is Coffee or Tea a Good Substitute?
If you have to ask this question, most probably you are not drinking enough water. Coffee isn’t a substitute for water, and studies link it to an increase in blood sugar and insulin resistance. Many people that drink coffee, add sugar and/or cream, which causes a bigger problem. Sugar and many substitutes are problematic for diabetics to begin with, adding them to coffee is still bad. Cream has a higher fat and cholesterol content than whole milk, and I’ve already written about staying away from nonfat milk.
In some ways’ tea can be a good substitute for water but it depends on the tea you drink, and how you take your tea. There is a long list of beneficial teas you should consider, and I list many of them below. I will classify them into caffeinated and decaffeinated to keep it simple. Too much caffeine can be bad for you, so if you choose a caffeinated tea, set a limit on how much. My favorite tea is a black tea, which is highly recommended for diabetics, but it is caffeinated so I keep my consumption low. Green tea is my decaffeinated favorite, so drink green tea, as long as you don’t add any sugar in your tea to reap the benefits.
My recommendation for a sugar substitute is Stevia, even if people say it has an after-taste. I have a Stevie plant in my back yard and have used the leaves to sweeten tea and other drinks.
Tip: Good water is the best remedy for hydrating the body, even if alternatives can be substituted.
Why is Water Good for You? Is All Water as Good as Any Water?
Not all water is created equal, and in this article I only want to talk about five clean potable water types. Your body thrives on an alkaline pH (potential Hydrogen) level of 7 or more, in contrast to an acidic pH of below 7. Your digestive processes produce acid, and over time your pH level is degraded by these acids. The pancreas plays a key role in maintaining the alkalinity in your body, and it can get worn down. Remember, the pancreas also controls the glucose levels. Below is my prioritized list of these different types of water.
- Ionized Alkaline water – Contains Ionized Alkaline Minerals that are essential for your health. Ionization increases antioxidant power.
- Ionized water – Contains Ionized water and ionized minerals which have an electrical charge.
- Alkaline water – Contains alkaline Minerals (Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium) that are good for your body systems.
- Filtered water – This water has been passed through a water filter like Brita or PUR, and provides the best low cost alternative to the first three. Quality of this water is on par with bottled water, but it can be cheaper than buying bottled water, and you can avoid any BPA questions.
- Bottled water – Bottled water retailers are well aware of the quality of our nations tap water, and the top water brands in the country run that tap water through a filter, bottle it and sell it. Quality is on par with filtered water using a Brita or PUR water filter in your home.
Unfortunately, the first three above come with a price tag that many will find too expensive. Each have a relatively short shelf life, you generally have to buy a water ionizer to make it. You can finance a water ionizer for less than you’d pay for bottled alkaline water. Bottled alkaline water is expensive, you will pay between $2 – $5 per bottle for it. If you drank 2 liters per day of bottled alkaline water, you’d easily spend more than $100 per month!
How Can You Know What is Enough?
You may find this a funny question, but you might be surprised at the answer. You should be drinking half of your body weight, in ounces of water (or 64 oz, whichever is MORE). For example, if you weigh 160 pounds you should be drinking 80 oz. of water per day. (Body weight / 2 = number of ounces of water per day) Drinking too much water in a short period can cause hyponatremia. This condition is when your body gets rid of too much water too rapidly and the salt concentration in your blood reduces. When the salt content is too low, it causes the cells in the organs throughout your body to swell. Throbbing headaches are symptoms of both over hydration and dehydration.
Tip: Using 64 oz as a guide, spread out your water intake over the day to avoid complications of over hydration.
Drink Lots of Water Every Day
Why is water good for you – Diabetic? It is especially important for diabetics and prediabetics to maintain hydration in order to keep complications of dehydration to a minimum. In my Symptoms & Signs of Diabetes article I identified skin infections as a symptom of type 2. Bacterial and fungal infections can happen to anybody, but people with diabetes get them more easily. Some other infections are only for people with diabetes.
Happy Drinking! Updated: After researching Dr. Willard's Water at the suggestion from a comment on this site I decided to link it directly.