Every year on 22nd March, World Water Day calls for the world to focus their attention on the importance of water. The theme this year is ‘Nature for Water’, exploring nature-based solutions to the various water challenges we face.
This month, we want to remind ourselves of how lucky we are to have instant access to clean and safe drinking water. We will take a look at the importance of water for our health and consider some ways that we can all help to conserve water in different areas of our lives.
5 health benefits of drinking water:
It keeps us alive
Clearly, this is a pretty huge benefit! Up to 60% of the adult human body is made up of water, so it’s essential we keep this topped up! In fact, the average human can only live for around 4-5 days without water!
Increases mental functioning
Did you know that the human brain is made up of roughly 75% water? This is why staying hydrated can prevent and cure headaches, reduce fatigue and even improve your mood! So, keep your mind sharp by staying hydrated.
Improves muscle functioning
Drinking plenty of water provides the electrolytes that your muscles need to maintain strength and energy. Water can also help speed up muscle recovery time after a workout by flushing toxins from your body and reducing muscle soreness.
Aids digestive system
Staying hydrated helps to keep our digestive system moving – from creating the saliva which beings the process of digestion, to helping digest fibre in the gut, water is essential!
Regulates body temperature
The water in your body has a large heat capacity, meaning that it helps to reduce significant temperature change. For example, sweating is a key way that your body remains a steady temperature because the sweat evaporates and cools the skin.
What Can I Do?
Due to pollution and damage to the world’s ecosystems, the quality and availability of clean and safe drinking water in many places around the world is severely limited. This means that 2.1 billion people are unable to access safe drinking water at home.
However, there are lots of things that you can do. Firstly, raising awareness, fundraising, donating, or volunteering with various charities such as WaterAid will help significantly. You can also do your part to conserve water by following these simple tips:
5 ways to save water:
Only run your dishwasher or washing machine when it’s full
This is an easy way to make sure you’re optimising your water usage. It’s also a good idea to choose the “quick wash” setting on your washing machine if you have one, as this will consume less water.
Turn off the tap whilst you brush your teeth
Hopefully you do this one already, but if not, it’s an easy habit to get into and will make a big difference to water consumption!
Cut your showers short
Firstly, if you take showers more often than baths then this is great start, since showers use a lot less water. However, showers do still take up a large quantity of water so try to cut down your time spent in the shower and this will make a big difference.
Use the “short flush” button on toilets
Low-flush toilets use roughly 6.1 litres of water per flush in comparison to normal toilets which use three or four times that amount! So, when you can, press the short-flush button!
Eat less meat
The food that we eat takes up a huge amount of water before it reaches our plates. Rearing meat takes an especially high amount of water because animals themselves drink water, they eat foods which require an enormous amount of water to grow, and then the slaughterhouses and farm houses consume vast amounts of water as well. Did you know that it takes an unbelievable 3,091,000 litres of water to produce just 200kilos of boneless beef – that’s 15,400 litres of water per kilo! Eating less meat, beef in particular, is one of the most effective ways that we can help to save water.
Not only will these water-saving habits help to conserve water, but they will save you money too! So, this month, make sure you are giving your body plenty of water, but give the amount of water you waste a second thought!