Hydration for your heart... the heart is the body’s powerhouse: it’s the engine that drives you and none of us would survive without it. It makes sense then surely to ensure that your heart is in tip-top condition so that we can live our very best, healthiest and longest lives. The heart is just a muscle – although it’s an incredibly complex one. As a muscle, it relies upon electrical impulses to keep beating (as well as a whole host of other functions).
Just like all other vital organs, the heart needs water to function at its best. It is made up of 73% water, so keeping the heart hydrated is important.
Now, hearts can’t drink water – so how do we keep the heart hydrated?
The answer is simple. Each day, the heart beats around 100,000 times, continuously pumping about eight pints of blood around our bodies through our circulatory systems. This blood delivers nutrients and oxygen to all parts of our bodies and takes away unwanted carbon dioxide and waste products.
Your heart and circulatory system work together to deliver blood to your organs so that they can function optimally.
When you don’t get enough fluids (water in particular), your blood’s volume decreases. When your blood volume decreases, the heart has a hard time distributing oxygenated blood to all of the parts of your body. Blood thickens when it loses volume, making it harder to circulate. This creates added stress on the heart and increases the risk of damage to both the heart and the arteries.
Could drinking water keep your heart healthy?
It certainly appears so. Research has shown that drinking more water gives you a lower risk of death from developing coronary heart disease. When you get enough fluid, it thins out the blood in your system, which allows the heart to do its job more efficiently. So, drinking more water really does reduce the strain on your heart.
It’s easy to see why keeping your heart hydrated is so vital – drinking enough water on a daily makes the difference between a strong, healthy heart and potentially a dehydrated heart under duress.
So how much water is enough for our daily intake?
The U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine has determined that an adequate amount of water to be drinking each day is about 15.5 cups (3.7 litres) for men and about 11.5 cups (2.7 litres) for women. This amount will fluctuate slightly based on other factors such as age and weight.
Will drinking water affect your appearance?
Sometimes it’s good to remind ourselves that in order to look healthy, we need to keep our internal organs happy too – you can’t have one without the other. And drinking enough water will keep your insides happy.
There’s no time like the present to start looking after yourself, your body and your life – so, the next time you’re about to walk on by the water cooler, don’t. Instead, take your water bottle or glass and make the water cooler station part of your daily routine at work: fill your bottle and drink your way to a healthier heart and consequently, a healthier you.