You now the drill right? You've heard it countless times before. We should all be drinking more water during the day, so why aren't most of us doing it?! I add myself in the mix here because this is the one healthy habit I haven't been able to master, at least not when I'm having a busy or stressful day. During days in which things get crazy at Brownble, I sometimes look at the watch and realize it's 3 o´clock and I haven't had my first sip of water in the entire day. Yup! Just being honest here! 

On days that are less busy, I'm a bit better at it, but I have to make a conscious effort to get my glasses of water in. Hunger has this way of taking over and making you walk into the kitchen, extreme thirst can do that too, but so many of us are walking around, not exactly parched, but not hydrated either, and we just can't remember to drink up.

For some of us (and I'm including myself in this group), it's all about being busy and not even remembering to grab a glass or re-fill our water bottles. For others, it's the fact that plain water feels boring, uninteresting and that we've gotten so used to drinking flavored drinks, sodas, juices and other beverages that we've forgotten that very essential rule of eating and drinking: water is the ONLY beverage you need, and we should steer clear from all others as much as possible. Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not saying you can never have a glass of wine, or a refreshing iced tea or lemonade in the summer (and anyone who knows me, knows I love a nice cold brew), I'm just saying that these should be re-branded as "special" and "celebration" drinks, and that our main daily drink should just be water. Water doesn't have to be boring, and we can certainly overcome the drinking amnesia on stressful days, with the tips I'm giving you today:

Bring the water to the people!

If you have it next to you, or in your bag, on your desk or next to the TV, you'll be more likely to drink it. Most of my hours during the day are spent in my desk in front of the computer, so I always bring a glass of water with me before I start the day. Even better, bring a whole pitcher and a glass, that way re-filling becomes almost automatic.

Here are some little location hacks I love:

  • Carry a bottle (preferably not plastic) with you in your bag and gym bag. As soon as it runs low, re-fill it. 

  • Whenever you're getting ready to exercise, take a bottle or glass and place it close by, take mini water breaks throughout, and get into the habit of drinking a full glass as soon as you're done and immediately refilling it for later.

  • Place a large bottle of water or a pitcher and a glass on your desk.

  • Whenever you have company over and are serving coffee, tea, wine or whatever you're enjoying, also include a bottle of water and some glasses.

  • Place a glass or bottle on your nightstand so you can have some before bed, but especially very early upon waking. Sleep is very dehydrating.

  • Always have water with you when you travel. Buy it after you pass security if you're traveling by plane, or take your empty bottle and re-fill it inside. Sip it throughout your flight.

Habit swap: If you're ordering coffee or an alcoholic beverage, ask for a glass of water as well at the same time

Get into the habit of asking for a glass of water every time you order coffee, wine or your alcoholic beverage of choice. These can be very dehydrating for the body, so have some water right next to it to remind you to re-fill that tank.

Make it look!

Homemade flavored water is perfect for those of you who stay away from H20 because you don't enjoy the taste or find it too plain. You can not only add natural ingredients to add flavor, but just the beautiful look of it will inspire you to drink more.

Here are my favorite add ons for the perfect glass of beautifully flavored water made with natural ingredients:

  • Add sliced strawberries, raspberries or blueberries and some mint leaves.

  • Thinly sliced cucumber.

  • Grated ginger and a squeeze of lemon.

  • Mango and mint.

  • Peach slices.

  • Mint and some lemon slices.

  • Watermelon cubes.

  • Pineapple, mint and grated ginger.

  • Strawberries and basil.

  • Kiwi and lime slices.

  • Kiwi and cucumber.

Use a non-traditional glass or cup

The kid inside us always wants to play, and those "mom I'll only drink my juice if it's in the red sippy cup" days are not as over as you'd think. Many people report an increase in their water intake by just designating a new and "fun" place to drink from. For some it might be a beautiful and elegant wine glass, your favorite water bottle, for me it's my favorite mason jar or a coffee mug. Go figure! It really works though, and the glass itself serves as a reminder to drink up.

Add two or three habit glasses a day

Choose two or three moments throughout the day in which you know you have to have a glass of water. Mine are as soon as I come back from walking the dogs in the morning. I re-fill their water bowl, and have mine too! Another great one which helps with satiety and aids in digestion is to have a glass half an hour before each meal. Another favorite of mine is to have one as soon as I've finished exercising, and one right after breakfast. Why do these work for me? Because I've done it enough times that it's simply a habit and I don't even have to think about it.

Eat lots of fruits and vegetables

These foods are high in water content and they'll help you stay hydrated as well as supply that much needed fiber, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. Plus that combo of high fiber foods and water, is perfect for a healthy digestive system and elimination. It's a win win!

Why should I drink up?

Still not convinced that water should be your number one beverage of choice? Water aids in weight loss, it helps flush out toxins, it helps you recover faster from colds and especially a cough that won't go away. It helps boost immunity, it helps give you clearer skin and helps with hair loss, it helps you stay energized and improves mental concentration and focus, boosts your metabolism, helps with regularity, increases satiety and has been shown to help control calorie intake. It energizes your muscles making your exercise routine more effective and easier, it helps prevent kidney stones, prevents and relieves headaches and migraines. I could go on and on! Isn't water the best?

Do you have any tips that have really helped you increase your water intake? Share them in the comments below!

Thanks for reading everyone!

Enjoy some of our plant-based recipes here, and we'd love for you to join us in our video-based online program My Brownble, where we teach you how to cook amazing vegan food, and help you on that ongoing quest of finding balance. You'll learn how to indulge in your favorites and still prioritize your health, creating healthy habits that last you a lifetime. 

In and out of the kitchen. 

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