[WEEK TWO – FLUIDS]
This week we are limiting beverages to only healthy options and eliminating sugary + unhealthy beverages.
You have these beverages to choose from this week:
- Coffee [adding real cream, unsweetened coconut milk, a little honey and/or stevia are allowed]
- Unsweetened tea [a little honey and stevia are allowed]
- Alcohol: red or white wine [in moderation, one glass/night on average]
- Others: Kombucha, sparkling water, homemade fruit infused water, 2% or whole organic milk [no fat-free]
This week’s challenge may be difficult for people who rarely drink water. And it may be one of the most important challenges, so please do not take it lightly! Hydration is essential for overall health. Our bodies are made up of 60-70% water, which means that we need to drink lots of it to support each and every bodily function. Water is good for so many reasons:  it’s a natural detoxifier  water is energizing  it nourishes your joints, skin, etc.  it improves gut health and helps you stay or become regular  water can help you lose weight.
Dehydration should not be taken lightly, as it can have some pretty negative health effects. Here are some signs of dehydration that you should watch out for:  fatigue  dizzy/lightheaded  lack of concentration  headaches  dark colored urine  cramping or increased muscle soreness  loss of consciousness.
A problem that I see often among my clients is too little water consumption and far too many beverages that contain added sugar, artificial sweeteners, artificial flavors, chemicals, etc. Drinking sugary beverages is an easy way to add hundreds of extra low-quality calories to your daily diet which can lead to weight gain, fatigue, sugar cravings, etc. Diet, “lite” or zero-calorie beverages are not healthier than regular sugar-laden options either. While they may not contain many calories, they are still full of chemicals and have been shown increase sugar cravings and weight gain, sometimes even more than sugary beverages do.
Added sugar from sodas, juices, sweetened teas, sweetened coffee drinks, energy drinks, etc. should be avoided as much as possible if you’re serious about making a change to your lifestyle. These sugary beverages are hardly satisfying and often contain an entire days worth of added sugar. The American Heart Association has set a recommendation for daily added sugar consumption to help you limit added sugar in your diet as much as possible. Here’s what that looks like:  women should limit added sugar consumption to no more than 6 teaspoons or 35 grams per day  men should limit added sugar consumption to no more than 9 teaspoons or 45 grams per day. To put that into perspective, just one 12-oz bottle of cranberry juice cocktail contains around 47 grams of sugar and one 12-oz can of soda contains 40 grams of sugar! Yikes! That’s more than whole days worth of added sugar in just one seemingly harmless 12-oz beverage.
This week, if you can focus on getting the majority of your fluids from water, you will be on the fast track to better health! Remember that you can get your water from unsweetened tea and homemade broths, too.
HELPFUL TIPS FOR INCREASING WATER CONSUMPTION
- Stay hydrated during the day by keeping a water bottle with you at all times [in the car, at your desk, at home, etc.]
- If you get bored with plain water, add some fruit to it! Add berries, lemon/lime, or even cucumber for a delicious spin on plain old water.
- Drink a big glass of water first thing in the morning, no excuses or exceptions.
- Set a water consumption goal for yourself. I make sure that I’ve consumed at least one, 24-oz water bottle full before breakfast, lunch and dinner.
- Use a water tracking app on your smart phone to keep track. Some apps even remind you when you haven’t had enough.
- My favorite tip is having a water bottle that you actually like. I love my mason jar water bottles, lids and straws from The Mason Bar Company.
To take this challenge a step further, I’d like you to drink a minimum of 8 cups of water [64 ounces daily]. Remember, that’s a minimum, so please drink more water if you can, especially if you’re working out regularly.
GOOD LUCK THIS WEEK!
I want to see how you’re doing this week, so be sure to post pictures of your meals on Facebook or Instagram. Use the hashtag #fabulousyoufallchallenge or #nutritiouslyrooted. I can’t wait to see them!
Much love to you all! I sincerely thank you for being a part of the Nutritiously Rooted community
live happily + healthfully,
Blogger, Foodie + Health Enthusiast