Every woman experiences the menopause differently, yet staying hydrated from the inside out is one of the most valuable things you can do for your body. Water can help you to maintain a steady state of healthy balance.
Why is hydration so important in the menopause?
Water makes up a staggering 75 per cent of our body, so every single cell, organ and tissue is dependent on water to function. Imagine how you would react if someone were to pour coffee, diet coke, or alcohol into a plant? Well, our body’s needs are no different to that plant.
Intuitively, we all know that water is an essential part of any life force, including our own. This is because it:
- Regulates our body temperature
- Lubricates all our bones and teeth
- Creates all of our body fluids
- Circulates nutrients around the body
- Boosts our metabolism and digestion
- Cleanses our body of toxic waste
- Improves blood circulation
- Produces more urine to flush out bad bacteria
- Bulks up our stool matter and prevents constipation
And so much more!
How does dehydration impact the body in the menopause?
Dehydration is one of the biggest reasons for experiencing both intense and frequent symptoms in the menopause. But why is this?
- Our joints need water to create a lubricant film around them, without water we will experience more joint aches, pains and inflammation.
- Our skin needs water to keep the blood stream flowing smoothly, to deliver oxygen and nutrients, without enough water we will experience a drier skin quality – think about a grape versus a raisin!
- Our gut needs water to create the appropriate saliva and acids in the digestive tract to break down food efficiently, without water we will experience stomach bloating, gas and inflammation syndromes.
- Our elimination channels need water to bulk up our stools and filtrate our urine through our kidneys and bladder, without a constant flow of water we will face constipation, weaker digestion and slower elimination of toxins which could lead to infections.
- Our brain is made of 80 per cent water, without water, our blood flow to the brain is challenged, which will create more headaches, brain fog, memory loss and forgetfulness, confused thought pattens, that contribute to mood swings, anxiety, depression etc.
- Our blood stream needs water to deliver the optimal amount of oxygen, nutrients, and hormones, causing nutrient deficiencies, high blood pressure, the risk of heart problems, and trigger hot flushes, night sweats and fatigue.
- Our sexual organs need water to provide the moisture to create lubrication in the vaginal passage, without water we will experience more vaginal dryness and soreness during every day life and sexual intercourse.
Staying hydrated can rescue us from the intensity and frequency of many of the symptoms of the menopause. Our body is constantly losing water through breathing, sweating and digestion and even more so when we add night sweats and hot flushes into the equation. It's important to remember that beverages such as coffee, alcohol or any carbonated soda drinks, don't count towards hydration, in fact these will work to quickly dehydrate, since they contain toxic substances that the body actually wants to excrete out immediately.
Top tips for improving hydration:
- Drink water from a quality source – a water distiller is cheap and provides the purest water
- Aim to drink at least two litres of water per day
- Limit your intake of tea, coffee, alcohol or carbonated soda drinks as they are diuretics (they take a little extra fluid from your body)
- Increase your intake of water-rich foods i.e. fruits and vegetables
- Note that ofoods can also offer a valuable
- Avoid salt on your food as much as possible; consume sodium-rich plant-based foods instead
- Infuse citrus fruits, cucumber, or herbs into your water to naturally flavour it
- Keep an eye on your urine: dark yellow means dehydrated, light yellow means hydrated
- Make sure you keep a jug of water beside you in bed to replace fluids lost through night sweats.