Helping your clients create small, healthy habits that have a huge effect on their lifestyle can be incredibly rewarding. When your client prioritises their health, it makes your role as an aesthetician safer and easier and paves the way for better results.
It’s hard to think of a simpler habit than staying hydrated. Optimal hydration supports a range of physiological functions, including body temperature regulation, joint lubrication, organ function, infection prevention, as well as sleep quality, cognitive function and mood regulation.1-2 However, despite all these benefits of drinking water, it’s estimated that around 90% of British people don’t drink the recommended daily intake of water.
HOW MUCH IS ENOUGH?
How much water a person should intake varies and depends on a range of factors, including age, gender, and weight. As a general rule, if you start to feel thirsty, you’re already on the path to being dehydrated. But, as we age, our thirst signalling weakens, meaning that older adults are at greater risk of becoming dehydrated.
For this reason, it’s important to listen to your body, drink at the first feelings of thirst and keep a close eye on the colour of your urine. Urine should be a pale straw colour. Anything darker than this is an indicator of dehydration and a sign to rehydrate as soon as you can. Generally, adults (including older adults) should aim to drink around 1600ml (women) and 2000ml (men) of fluid each day. Environmental factors, including temperature and humidity, as well as your level of physical activity and perspiration, can also influence fluid requirements.3
TAP VERSUS FILTERED
Many of us are already aware of the importance of hydration, but how often do you consider the quality of the water you are drinking? Tap water is the most readily available source of drinking water in the UK. With companies running 2.5 million tests on tap water every year, UK tap water is among some of the best quality in the world.4
However, the biggest concern with unfiltered water is chlorine. Chlorine is used to kill off any disease-causing microorganisms but can have adverse effects on our health, and ingestion of large amounts of chlorine should be avoided. A small amount of residual chlorine remains present in tap water and is safe to consume4 , as this is necessary to maintain the quality of drinking water through the piping network.
However, many people choose to filter their water as they believe this is better for their health and even tastes better. Filtering water is believed to remove impurities, contaminants and heavy metals. Water filtration not only removes impurities but cleverly retains important minerals such as fluoride, calcium, magnesium, and zinc, as well as improving the taste and smell.5-6
SPARKLING VS STILL
Some believe that still water is a better hydration source than sparkling water. However, a 2015 randomised study proved this theory to be wrong and showed that sparkling water is just as hydrating as still or tap water.7-8
The study looked at thirteen commonly consumed still and sparkling water beverages and measured the urine output and fluid balance following consumption. The study also found that drinks with a higher mineral content proved to be even more hydrating than those with a lower mineral content.7
If you’re trying to decide whether still or sparkling water is the best choice for you to optimise hydration levels, the answer is very simple: whichever you will drink more of! If you are someone who struggles to drink enough plain water, introducing sparkling water may be a good way to up your intake. Try adding sliced cucumber, fresh berries, or segments of citrus to improve the flavour profile of your drinks.
Some people swear that investing in bottled mineral water is the best way to stay hydrated because of the added benefit of trace minerals that help the body function at its best.
The stunning Snowdonia National Park in Wales is home to the popular Trefriw Wells Spa, known for its naturally iron-rich water9 . This naturally occurring, mineral-rich water contains approximately 0.20mg of iron per millilitre and is highly bioavailable, meaning it is easy absorbed by the body.10-11
Iron plays a vital role in carrying oxygen around the body, as well as contributing to normal energy-yielding metabolism, maintaining the immune system and cognitive function. Liquid iron as a supplement has been used all over the world for the last 200 years.
Prior to this, in the early 1700s, locals would use the Trefriw Wells Spa to bathe in, and in 1833 the iron-infused water was turned into an official bathhouse. Nowadays, you can incorporate natural iron water into your diet by supplementing with Spatone®, which is sourced directly from Trefriw Wells Spa itself.12
FRUIT AND VEG
Whether you opt for tap or filtered, still, sparkling or mineral, water is the most obvious way to stay hydrated, but it’s not the only way. Fresh fruit and vegetables that have a high water content count towards your daily fluid intake with the added benefit of vitamins, minerals and fibre. Consider cucumbers, melon, oranges, bell peppers and celery.
BEWARE THE DIURETICS
Caffeinated drinks such as tea and coffee can act as a mild diuretic, which means they can cause the body to expel more water than it usually would. However, in small amounts, there’s no need to swerve your morning coffee so long as you drink plenty of water throughout the day.
However, to truly optimise hydration, it’s best to stay away from alcohol. Alcohol is a big-hitting diuretic as it interferes with an important water regulating hormone called vasopressin. The result of a heavy drinking session is that your body will excrete more liquid through urine than you’re able to take in. Switch to low or no-alcohol alternatives and enjoy sparkling eyes, plump skin and a clear head the next day.
1. hsph.harvard.edu/news/hsph-in-the-news/theimportance-of-hydration/#:~:text=Drinking%20 enough%20water%20each%20 day,quality%2C%20cognition%2C%20and%20 mood.
4. water.org.uk/news-item/tap-water-forhydration-no-filter-needed/ 5. watercare.co.uk/filtered-tap-water-thebenefits/
6. water.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/ The_role_of_tap_water_in_public_health_ report_28.1.2016-min.pdf
9. who.int/water_sanitation_health/dwq/ chemicals/iron.pdf