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Ode to H2O: Eight Cups a Day Helps Keep the Doctor Away

Fresh-fruit infusions are a tasty way to make it easier to down more water.

Water is essential to life, but we don’t always drink enough. Drinking water can be difficult when such temptations as juices, soft drinks and alcoholic beverages are so widely available.

Since water’s taste is subtle, some people see it as the last option to quench their thirst. But it’s essential to leave behind the notion that water is tasteless, and find a source that’s pleasing to an individual’s palate.

“Drinking water in the daily diet is essential for the patient. It prevents health problems, including being overweight,” said nutritionist Roxana Hernández Rodríguez. Water also benefits the skin by keeping it fresh and preventing the appearance of acne.

Health professionals recommend drinking a glass of water first thing in the morning. It speeds one’s metabolism and helps improve digestion, especially for those with constipation problems.

Water can also help people stop eating between meals. Those who snack out of anxiety can have a glass of water instead. It would satisfy the imaginary hunger and prevent people from eating junk food, which is harmful to their health and affects weight.

It can be difficult to drink enough plain water for good health. *** A veces es difícil beber la cantidad de agua simple para mantener una buena salud. (Lilith Redmoon/Unsplash)

“The goal is to drink two liters (eight cups) of water a day,” the nutritionist said. However, if that is difficult, try starting with one liter (four cups) a day and adjust that amount upward little by little. Carrying a water bottle to drink small amounts during the day, whether at work, the supermarket, school or the gym, is a good strategy in this regard.

“Today there are ways to help people drink more water without making it a burden,” she said, “such as buying flashy thermos or adding fruit infusions to give water a better flavor.”

The latter simply involves adding fruit chunks to a jar with water. There is no need to crush or blend the fruits. Infusions can have a mix of fruits, including lemon, orange, watermelon, kiwi or peach. Herbs such as spearmint can add interesting taste hints.

In addition, filters are available on the market that purify water and eliminate any undesirable flavors, such as chlorine. They can be helpful when tap water is not an option.

Taking such simple steps is well worth it, Rodríguez said. “Drinking juices or soft drinks, highly loaded with sugars and preservatives, is extremely harmful to the body,” the nutritionist said.

While drinking enough H2O is a concern for everyone, getting access to safe drinking water is a worry for about 785 million people across the globe, or 1 out of every 9 persons. “According to a report by the World Economic Forum, the water crisis is the No. 5 global risk in terms of impact to society,” Water.org reports.

(Translated and edited by Gabriela Olmos. Edited by Matthew B. Hall)