Water is an essential, yet often overlooked nutrient to the human body.
It is crucial to keep your body hydrated, as having sufficient amounts of water in your system will protect you from developing various health problems.
First, it is important to understand the basic principles of water and how it affects your body. Water has a clearly defined role in your body and aids in the following functions:
- Regulates body temperature
- Supplies oxygen and nutrients to all cells
- Protects and moistens tissues
- Lubricates joints
- Aids digestion and helps prevent constipation
- Helps the kidneys and liver by flushing out waste products
- Dissolves minerals and thus helps in their absorption
- Keeps the bladder clear of bacteria
- Moisturizes the skin to maintain its texture and appearance
It is safe to say that every system in your body depends on water. Unfortunately, your body cannot store water as it loses water every day through your urine, sweat, breath, and bowel movements.
Therefore, it is very important that you drink water every day to replace this lost water and prevent dehydration.
Water and Diabetes
Recent research has revealed interesting findings related to water intake and blood sugar levels. This particular finding can be very valuable for those who are diabetic and/or ar at risk of having a high blood sugar.
Having high blood sugar – or hyperglycemia – is a serious health problem for those who have type 1 or type 2 diabetes.
There are two types of hyperglycemia that people with diabetes can have.
Fasting hyperglycemia is when you have a blood sugar greater than 130 mg/dL after fasting for at least 8 hours. However, after-meal hyperglycemia is when you have a blood sugar greater than 180 mg/dL.
It is very dangerous for a diabetic to have a high blood sugar for a long period of times as many organs in your body can get damaged, including your nerves and blood vessels.
Therefore, it is essential that you treat symptoms of hyperglycemia in order to prevent further health complications from arising.
Moreover, research has shown that drinking about four or more glasses of water a day may actually lower your risk of developing hyperglycemia.
A study that was conducted among 3,510 men and women with normal blood sugar levels found that those who drank only half a liter of water or less each day were more likely to develop high blood sugar levels than those who drank more water. More specifically, according to the results of the study, those who drank more water were 37% less likely to develop hyperglycemia over the next nine years than those who drank less.
Also, it is important to know that the study took other factors into accounts, such as age, weight, gender, physical activity, consumption of sugary drinks and alcohol. And with these factors taken into account, the link between low water intake and high blood sugar levels was still present.
However, it is important to understand that the results do not provide a cause-and-effect relationship between the amounts of water drank and the level of blood sugar.
In other words, you cannot instantly conclude that drinking less water will cause your blood sugar level to increase because other possible unmeasured factors could have affected the results.
However, what you can learn from this study is that there is some sort of a relationship between the amount of water you drink and your blood sugar level. Simply put, drinking less water is often times associated with higher blood sugar levels. Additionally, the importance of drinking water is further emphasized in this study, especially for those who are diabetic.
According to the Diabetes Education Foundation, when blood sugar is high, a lot of water is necessary to help the sugar leave your body via the kidneys.
When your blood sugar levels are high, your body will try to remove the excess sugar out of your body through your urine.