AFFFILIATE DISCLOSURE: In order for me to support my blogging and social media activities, I may receive monetary compensation for links to products from this post. However, I only recommend products that I personally love and use myself!.
Most of us are guilty of it. According to the Idaho-based Panhandle Health District, up to 75 % of Americans are chronically dehydrated. Even though our bodies NEED hydration, we ignore the feeling and continue to go about our busy lives, forgetting to drink that extra sip of water our body's been asking for all day long. The first thing I think in the morning is usually “coffee” not “water”.
After randomly reading a post on the internet about a woman who basically lost ten years off her face just from properly hydrating for 30 days, I was ready to jump on board right then and there. Ok…seriously, when I read through the post, I thought to myself “hand me a glass of water! I am sold!” and even in the pictures she looked significantly younger, but I wasn't totally sold that just by drinking the proper amount of water daily, I would see any major changes in my life, or that it would shed a year or two off my face. I was truly in for a pleasant surprise.
Proper hydration makes your world go 'round
Our bodies are made up of 55% (in elderly) - 75% (in infants) water, making our main ingredient H2O. Let's face it, every single system in our body from temperature regulation to weight loss, needs water to keep functioning properly. If you are not getting the water that your body needs daily, all of your systems can and will fail because of it! Some of the most common “side effects” of proper hydration include:
- Clearer and younger looking skin
- Weight loss
- More energy without the need of caffeine or the afternoon drop that caffeine gives you
- Soft supple lips that aren't peeling or dry
- Good nights sleep
- Less headaches and migraines
- Less illnesses
- Less joint and muscle pains
- Helps flush toxins from the body
- Keeps your bowels functioning properly
- Lowers blood pressure
How much water is enough for you?
When I set out to learn how much water I needed to keep myself hydrated, I quickly learned that there are differing numbers in this arena. After a little of bit of research, I learned that how much water your body needs depends upon how much you weigh, whether or not you are exercising for the day, and/or pregnant or breastfeeding. To be able to keep up with my water intake daily I found the most amazing android app (there is one for Iphone/Ipad as well!) called Water Your Body. It takes into account, all of these factors and gives you a goal amount to drink for the day. Not only that, you can set the alarm to go off at whatever intervals you choose…just be aware that after a few days of this, you will feel like the app is your own personal water nazi and might even tell it to shut up a few times.
It took only 30 days to a more gorgeous me
I seriously had some reservations over how much of a difference I would see from just drinking my suggested amount of water a day, but it turns out, your body really DOES need water for every part to function properly. Within just a few days, I noticed quite a few marked changes in my energy levels as well as how well i slept at night. It was not nearly as hard as I had anticipated, getting used to peeing just a little bit more often throughout my day, and after just a few days I barely remembered my old habits of not having to go so often. Some of the other things I felt and wrote down in my journal throughout this experience was:
- Day 3 - My energy levels are through the roof today! I haven't had any caffeine in three days and I feel very awake today like I have had my morning coffee!
- Day 5 - I am noticing that I no longer experience any constipation, things are smooth moving!
- Day 10 - One of the weirdest things I never associated with being properly hydrated, is my libido is a LOT more active these days. The hubby definitely notices it as well! I wasn't even sure if this was linked to my hydration, but I further researched it and found that it does in fact improve the libido as well!
- Day 15 - These days, I am feeling a lot more refreshed when I wake up in the morning! That lethargic feeling that used to follow me from day to day has started to lose its grip on my body!
- Day 20 - I weighed myself this morning because I saw myself in the mirror and thought “Wow! You look good today!” and I am five pounds lighter!!! The dark circles under my eyes are mostly gone as well, though they've been there so long that I don't know it they'll ever go all the way away.
- Day 30 - My skin looks a LOT less splotchy in color and I have only broken out during my cycle (some things, like with hormones, only so much will work). The puffy dark circles underneath my eyes have mostly disappeared and my skin looks a lot more taught and firm. I keep getting compliments from strangers on the “glow” of my skin. No one believes that it's because of my hydration levels! I have had to tell them I don't wear any makeup or use any special high priced creams. I do look a little bit younger, though I don't feel like I look a whole ten years younger. More like, I look like I was FINALLY able to get some sleep!
Clean fresh water can be hard to come by, even if you live in the city
Did you know that tap water can be just as dirty and toxic as water found in a pond? There have been cases of neti pot users contracting a brain-eating amoeba that killed them, because they used tap water that was not first boiled. The water may look clear (and in some cases it may not) but tap water can contain a vast array of contaminants and pathogens. According to the Natural Resources Defense Council (aka NRDC) some of these worrisome contaminants found in tap water tested in 19 major US cities, include:
- Lead, which enters drinking water supplies from the corrosion of pipes and plumbing fixtures and can cause brain damage in infants and children
- Pathogens (germs) that can make people sick, especially those with weakened immune systems, the frail elderly and the very young
- By-products of chlorine treatment such as trihalomethanes and haloacetic acids, which may cause cancer and reproductive problems
- Arsenic, which may cause cancer, serious skin problems, birth defects and reproductive problems
- Radon, the rocket fuel perchlorate and other carcinogens or otherwise toxic chemicals
The water filter systems that we are talking about today are from the good folks over at the Berkey Water Filters (You can also find them on Facebook and Twitter). I was generously given the Travel Berkey Water Filter to review, but my opinions are my own! I will only share with you products that I myself love and use personally!
Is there a water filter out there to fit my needs?
The contaminants found in tap water aren't the only reason that I have wanted to get some form of filtration system for our home, I also have wanted to get the fluoride out of our drinking water for awhile now. I went on a search to find the right system for us, but most of them were WAY too overpriced, not to mention were they hefty systems that needed all sorts of installations (and removal since we rent) in our home. Many reverse osmosis systems not only need an install but they also waste a ton of water, some of them wasting up to 11 gallons of water per 1 gallon used! None of these were what I was looking for. I wanted
- something portable that we could take with us on-the-go for camping or bugging out (yes, I am totally a prepper, so this is an important factor for me!)
- a system that doesn't waste water while still effectively removing ALL of the contaminants that I am worried about, from my drinking water
- a system that doesn't remove the good stuff, like minerals that our body needs, that naturally occur in the water
- something that could sustain our whole family, not just a single serving water bottle
- something that was easy to maintain, with very little need to replace parts
After careful consideration and research, I finally found exactly what I was looking for in a water filter, with Berkey Water Filters.
Berkey Water Filters are portable water purification systems
All Berkey water filters produce purified drinking water. In order to be classified as a water purifier rather than just a water filter, Berkey has surpassed standards set by the military in order to be able to differentiate between water filters of different abilities. These standards set the bar so high that very few are able to achieve this classification. The technology that Berkey uses to purify water is able to handle the very smallest of water contaminants, even viruses, making it one of the most powerful water filtering systems available. Not only that, this system is extremely portable and is so effective it can be used on water found out in the wild, when you are roughing it! Berkey water filters are so efficient and effective that emergency relief workers depend on the Berkey water filter to take water of questionable quality and transform it into drinking water for all of their needs. With a wide range of sizes and filter configurations the Berkey water filter is able to handle any size group from 1 person, to a large group of people up to 150.
Water has never tasted so good!
Here in the Dallas area, water does not taste good, especially during the summertime when algae is in full bloom and they are using a TON of chemicals to counteract it. You can taste and smell the chemical concoction wafting off the top of the water, and it's enough to turn me in the opposite direction. I was SO beyond stoked to receive the Berkey Travel Filter system to review for you guys! I went ahead and purchased the arsenic/fluoride filters as well. The best part about this system is how much money you save versus the other systems! Not only are the filters cleanable, but Black Berkey element produces up to 3000 gallons of purified drinking water without the costly need of replacement. For some smaller families, this can mean the filters can be used for up to 4 years before needing replacement! The system is so easy to put together, that it was ready, and making us fresh water (or “the cleanest and best water in the world” as Syfy has been calling it) in under 5 minutes after opening the box! The water was so clean, that at first, all of us thought it tasted weird not having the plethora of flavors added to it. When I open the top lid where the black Berkey filters are housed, to fill it with water, I can smell all of the chlorine the filters have filtered out already. It smells like a swimming pool in there! My iced tea and coffee also taste a billion times better too. I really can't wait to take my Berkey Travel System out camping with us! You have got to get one!
Are you drinking enough water? Try it for 30 days and see how it makes you feel!
All information on The Hippy Homemaker is meant for educational and informational purposes only. The statements on this website have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. Products and/or information are not intended to diagnose, cure, treat, or prevent any disease. Readers are advised to do their own research and make decisions in partnership with their health care provider. If you are pregnant, nursing, have a medical condition or are taking any medication, please consult your physician.