Have a Drink…
…of water. Your brain is made up of about 75% liquid. It only stands to reason if you deplete your water supply your ability to think suffers. Usually we only worry about becoming dehydrated when we’re out in the hot sun or exercising. In reality dehydration works much more subtly on our bodies and our minds so that most often we don’t even notice that it’s having an adverse effect and the first place it hits us is in our brain power, our ability to think.
Living and breathing depletes our water supply. That’s all it takes. We don’t have to be active to use up water, sleeping is enough of a drain on our systems. Long before we actually get thirsty our water supply has already been depleted. And then when we do get thirsty we reach for colas or coffee. Unfortunately caffeine has the exact opposite effect that we need and leaches water away instead of leaving it available for our body to use. So in fact we are compounding our problem by dehydrating ourselves further.
When you become dehydrated more happens than you are aware of. If you don’t have enough water you begin to get sluggish and your ability to think gets harder and slower, your brain power is decreased. It’s not a huge change at first but it’s still significant enough to have an effect on your cognitive abilities. People who were tested scored considerably lower if they were denied water.
I’m not talking about ‘out of water in the desert’ dehydrated; I’m talking about everyday of your life dehydrated. If you exercise you get thirsty and you drink some water, same thing if you get overheated. It’s a natural response. You know that when you’re thirsty you need to have a drink. Those signs are obvious and you react to them. It’s the first, subtle, water depletion in your system that you aren’t so aware of. That sneaky level that you don’t notice because your brain hasn’t triggered your thirst response yet.
If you’re having problems getting your brain power to kick in first thing in the morning or find yourself winding down by the afternoon it may simply be a lack of water that’s creating it.
Let’s look at the average person’s habits. First thing in the morning we usually have coffee or tea. Most are caffeinated, some with an extra boost of caffein to get us going. Some folks have juice, these are loaded with sugar and have the same effect I’m sorry to say. Then we have lunch, again we’re drinking coffee, sometimes a cola. We’re getting fluids, we’re certainly getting full, but is it enough to hydrate us? Not likely.
How often do you reach for a glass of water? A lot of people are going to answer- I drink water- sometimes. And they do, sometimes, but hardly ever, certainly not on a regular basis. Yet water is a pure and simple solution to problems that plague a lot of people. It’s not difficult to find, its not expensive and it doesnt taste bad. It’s still a hard sell.
Even if people are willing to give water a try they hesitate before committing and ask how much water should I drink? all the while thinking they will never down 8 glasses of the stuff if they were paid to. (Funny how very few people ask ‘how many coffees can I have in one day?’ and they usually pay for those.) The old standby was 8 – eight ounce glasses, of course that would depend on your size and how active you are. My answer would be drink an amount that is comfortable and use the 8 glasses as a guide. If you’re only drinking one glass of water a day it’s a safe bet you can have more, probably a few more. You can easily drink a glass of water with each meal and one in between.
The truth is if you’re properly hydrated you’ll have more energy, you’ll feel healthier, you will become more alert and aware of your surroundings. If your brain is functioning on a full reservoir it will function at full capacity and you’ll think better and faster. A glass of water is a great boost to your creativity. You’ll find ideas are easier to come up with and they’re likely to be more unique. Your mind will work easier and it won’t seem like such a strain. All that and it’s one of the simplest changes you can make in your life.
To help get you started I’ve set out an easy plan. I’m not even going to hint that anyone give up tea or coffee, or your cola drinks either. We’re going to keep it real light.
Your Instant Increase in Brain Power:
- First thing in the morning have a glass of water. Go ahead and have your coffee or whatever afterward, as I said we’re not making this hard core.
- Around lunch, have another glass of water along with whatever you planned for lunch.
- Then grab a glass around 3:00 or somewhere in there, especially if you’re starting to feel like you’re slowing down.
- One glass of water with supper.
That’s only 4 glasses of water a day, nothing too drastic. Now remember, I’m not saying thats all the water you can have, drink as much as is comfortable, this is just to get you started. And you can have any other drink you’d like with it. I’m not intent on converting anyone to switch exclusively to water, just add some water to your day and feel the difference it makes especially when you want to increase your brain power.