Water by Vishwa Kiran
Water is the most important nutrient required by our body. Needless to say, it performs innumerable functions and also assists in many critical processes in our body. Water is a major component of every body cell, tissue and organ. It is vital that we maintain the right balance of water in our body and take adequate measures to refill once there is a decrease. 1 percent decrease in water in our body causes thirst and 20 percent could cause death. Water acts as a lubricant that helps in the production of saliva and the fluids surrounding the joints. It carries out the toxic waste from the body through urination. We lose water regularly through urine and sweat and hence we need to replenish it regularly.
Water has many functions within our body, which include-
Transportation of oxygen and nutrients through the blood
Acting as a necessary component (catalyst) of chemical reactions
Aid in elimination of waste through urine and feces
Lubrication of joints
Acting as a major component of body fluids such as mucus and tears
Giving cells their shape and stability
One needs to consume 2- 3ltrs of water every day. The quantity could differ depending on an individual’s health condition and the amount of physical activity the individual is involved in.
As dancers, the importance of hydrating ourselves regularly cannot be over-emphasized. During a single practice session (of approximately 1.5 to 2 hours of duration), we lose water through perspiration, a mechanism which helps our body cool down and maintain temperature. In an intense session of dance or other extreme physical activity, we could lose upto 1- 2ltrs of water through sweat. Once the water level in our body decreases, the strength and endurance capability of the muscles reduce. Thus, it is vital that we refill adequately every 15 minutes.
Apart from replenishment by way of drinking water, we could also consume food which is high in water content. For instance, 100% fruit juices are a great source of water for the body. However, a word of caution here – any soda-based drink or caffeine, though liquid, will dehydrate you further; it’s best to stay away from them when you are thirsty. While consumption of fresh produce of fruits and vegetables is the best source of water through food, it is always best to drink adequate WATER to stay physically active throughout the day and throughout a number of dance sessions in a day.
Benefits of maintaining a healthy water table in our bodies include:
Reduced headache- Considering that the brain is 70% water, dehydration is one of the main causes for headaches.
Good skin- since water replenishes your skin tissues and maintains its elasticity.
Maintains body temperature.
Healthy joints and Muscles- since water helps in lubricating joints and also assists in carrying oxygen to the muscles.
Good metabolism- which will indirectly help in weight loss.