Drink more water

Just about any important health-related goal (e.g. adding lean muscle mass, losing excess body fat, improving functional or athletic fitness, etc.) is achievable in part by drinking more water.

Unfortunately, many of us take personal hydration for granted. The major functions of water in the body include

  • Regulates body temperature
  • Moistens tissues (e.g. mouth, eyes, nose)
  • Lubricates your joints
  • Protects body organs and tissues
  • Helps prevent constipation
  • Helps the liver and kidneys by flushing toxins out of vital organs
  • Helps dissolve vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients for the body’s use
  • Carries nutrients, oxygen to cells

Clearly, almost all internal human systems need sufficient water to function efficiently and properly. So, what role does it play in physiotherapy recovery?

In the context of physical rehabilitation, water consumption plays a critical role in the quality of your recovery.

Your present health condition and activity level will dictate how much water you need, but a good starting point would be two litres spread out during the day. You will need to replenish more frequently when performing physiotherapy exercises to prevent dehydration, muscle fatigue, and light-headedness.

Heavy breathing and excess perspiration are sure signs that you are not drinking enough water during a workout. As the body’s temperature increases, it becomes more susceptible to dizziness, cramping, and headaches. Therefore, incorporate short “water breaks” during exercise (or treatment), and drink small amounts of water both before and after your therapy sessions.

While sports drinks are heavily marketed to the general public, its benefits only surpass those of water for high-intensity exercises performed by elite athletes. Instead, if your recovery routine demands a restoration of lost electrolytes (i.e. sodium, potassium levels), consider making your own salt and/or sugar solutions.

Human beings can go weeks without food, but they don’t stand a chance without water after a day or two. Speak to your physiotherapist about appropriate hydration at each stage of your recovery.

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