Staying hydrated in the summer can save your life, but staying hydrated in the winter is just as important. If you find that you drink less water in the wintertime, you’re actually facing dehydration on multiple fronts.
Keep Water Visible
Hot weather brings on thirst, so we are inclined to fill up a glass. However, cold weather often has us reaching for hot and often caffeinated beverages. To keep your water intake up as your home, office, skin and hair dry out, keep your Berkey water filter both visible and tanked up.
Load up your portable water bottles in the evening and refill the reservoir before you go to bed so you have bottled water for a walk or a workout when you get up and fresh water for coffee or tea.
Store Water at Room Temperature
If the weather in your part of the world gets cold, consider storing your drinking water bottles at room temperature instead of in the refrigerator. Many of us are cold enough, thank you, and don’t want to drink iced or cold water. However, you need water to maintain a healthy body temperature.
With water stored at room temperature and within easy reach, you may be more inclined to drink what’s needed for best health.
While a warm cup of tea may make you feel warmer, it’s interesting to note that it’s mostly the fluid and not the heat that warms your body. Your physical systems need water to keep your body going effectively; without water, managing your body’s core temperature can be difficult.
If a large bottle of chilled water doesn’t appeal to you in the colder months, treat yourself to a decaf tea and drink up. Use smaller water glasses and strive to empty a smaller glass multiple times during the day. Water is the liquid that protects your skin and hair from drying out and keeps your digestive system chugging along. Don’t expect any of these systems to work well without fluid.
If you must have caffeine in the morning or you enjoy an adult beverage at night, start with water. Drink 1 cup of water while your coffee or caffeinated tea brews in the morning. Drink water while you prepare dinner and have wine with your food. Both caffeine and alcohol dehydrate your tissues, so starting with water can lessen the risk of dehydration.
While You Workout
Stop after your reps and drink some water. If you always drink water as part of your warmup or your cooldown, add it in the middle of your workout and exercise. The gym is going to be drier in the winter, as is your home. You actually need as much if not more water during your winter workouts, as your urination output increases during cold weather.
Bump up your regular hydration goals. If you usually drink 8 ounces of water while walking your dogs, go for 12 in the winter. If your workout water bottle is generally a liter’s worth of water, split your workout and try to drink at least one and a half if not two liters of water as you exercise.
In addition to having your Berkey on the counter, set out a series of glasses for each person in the home. If your kids are competitive, consider creating goals and challenges that focus on
- returning their glasses to the glass station, and
- drinking some water each hour
If you enjoy movie night together, make sure to schedule a water break at the halfway point so everyone gets in the habit of feeling hydrated; that way, when you get dehydrated, you’ll know the feeling and be able to act on it quickly or avoid it altogether.
Benefits of Filtration
In addition to keeping water present and accounted for in your kitchen, a Berkey filtration system can protect you from toxins, such as chlorine and lead. Your drinking water can also contain giardia and cryptosporidium in the event of a sanitation glitch or failure in the water processing system.
With a Berkey on the counter, you have your own personal water filtration system. If your kids are old enough to manage the spigot, encourage them to fill up their water bottles as they’re pulled from the dish drainer or rack. At home, a large Berkey may be necessary for a big family, or you can invest in a small unit for traveling or to give as the perfect housewarming gift.
Jacob Hatch is the author and founder of Hydration Anywhere. He has been actively writing about drinking water since 2013. These days Jacob spends most of his time investigating water related news, studying environmental issues, reading health studies, and reviewing products like water bottles and water filters.