Drinking water is like drinking spit!
I struggle to choke it down and I know I’m not alone in this worrisome love/hate relationship with something so vital. In fact, the only love I have for it is that it’s essential for me to live. Can I get an amen?
As doulas, we stress the importance of hydration for our birth and postpartum clients, yet many times neglect ourselves.
Take yesterday for example.
I went to a postpartum doula shift and although I should have taken a water bottle and sipped on it, I just didn’t. To add insult to injury, I even said no thank you when some was offered to me because I was “fine” without it.
So, why is hydration important?
Water makes up the majority of the body and without it, we can’t survive! Dry mouth or feeling thirsty typically means dehydration has already set in.
Although there are no guidelines on exactly how much water should be consumed, one thing should be clear… YOUR URINE!
Yep, I said it, urine, pee pee, liquid waste, whatever you want to call it. Urine that is amber colored or anything other than clear or pale yellow is considered dehydrated.
Take a day and try to increase your intake if your toilet water looks like the color of honey and see how you feel! It’s likely that the increased water consumption can give you more energy, improve skin texture, and even help you sleep better!
So, what are some tips on increasing water intake?
My constant companion
Never leave home without a full water bottle! If you have one with a straw, that’s even better. Did you know that a study was done in food service that showed if straws were offered to patrons, they drank far more than when they didn’t? Use that to your advantage, just like restaurants do to theirs!
Sip sip sip
Set a sip alarm on your phone for every 15-20 minutes. This can be set to vibration so it’s not loud, but gives a gentle reminder to take a drink of what you have handy. Sips throughout the day add up, just like those sips after contractions add up for our doula clients.
It tastes like a swimming pool!
Hate chlorine, but also hate buying bottled water? Check out these self contained bottles with filters. No matter where you go and need a re-fill, the water will taste as good as it ever will. Cartridges don’t need to be replaced often and you can find bottles with carbon or charcoal canisters depending on your tastebuds!
Add a little something something
For those with a similar “spit factor” thought process, consider some flavor. Throw some fruit into a diffuser bottle or purchase flavor drops that can be added to any bottle or cup. My personal favorites are Stevia based products, especially the strawberry lemonade!
If you read through these tips and still can’t move toward drinking enough H2O, remember that all liquid intake is good. Eat more fruit, buy some coconut water, visit a smoothie bar, or grab some soup broth for lunch! Remember, self care is the best care and a hydrated doula is the best kind of doula!