Even if we know for sure that water is essential in life, we still have a difficult time getting into the habit of drinking lots of it. And if we don’t drink enough water, we don’t realize that we are putting ourselves at risk. If, at any time of the day, we feel thirsty, fatigued and experience some headaches, be aware that these are already signs of dehydration. If we refuse to do anything about this, we will always be grumpy and will always experience a decline, both mentally and physically. So, to get into the water habit, here are water drinking tips you should know about.

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Water Drinking Tips: The Best Times to Drink Water

Everyday Health explains the eight times in a day when your body needs water the most. The first is to drink water the moment you get up. Drink a glass of cool water right after you wake up so your circulatory system starts getting rid of free radicals and residue from the calories you burned and used during the metabolism while you were asleep. Without water to wake you up, your body will have a difficult time functioning.

Second, always drink water before a meal. This helps you feel fuller, which means you won’t wolf your food down. If you are properly hydrated before a meal, your stomach is prepared for food. The water wakes up your taste buds. It also moisturizes your stomach lining so you will not feel uncomfortable in eating acidic foods. Third, when you are hungry, drink water. Sometimes people think they’re hungry when they’re really just thirsty and already dehydrated. Drinking water at these times helps keep calorie intake in check.

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Fourth, drink water before you get into your workout routine. You need several 8-ounce glasses of water to protect your body from dehydration during and after workouts. Fifth, drink water after your workout. Do this so you can replace the fluids you have lost through perspiration. But, do not drink too much water too quickly because this may cause stomach cramps.

Sixth, drink water when you are exposed to germs. If you visited the hospital or are around sick people, drink more water than usual. This washes germs and viruses away. Also, a body that is well-hydrated does not let bacteria or viruses settle in and multiply in your body system. Seventh, drink more water if you are under the weather. Take your mom’s advice and just do it. You need plenty of water and fluids to get better.

Lastly, drink water when you are tired. If you want to take a nap but have a hard time getting one, drink a glass or two of water. Fatigue, we said earlier, is a sign of dehydration. So, you need that boost in energy before proceeding with work by drinking water.

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#2 Use an App to track how much water you are drinking. Today, if you involve an app in your daily routine, it is easier to keep track and get motivated. Downloading an app to keep up with how many glasses you’ve had is fun and easy. Just download and you’re all set. You won’t have an excuse anymore!

#3 Choose sparkling water or mineral water over sugary soda. If you love fizzy drinks and the cravings start kicking in, grab some sparkling water. To make it fancier, squeeze in some lime juice. This is definitely healthier and more fun than soda.

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#4 Eat food rich in water. A sneaky way to increase water intake is to add more fruits and veggies into your diet. Food that is high in water content is cucumber (96%), zucchini (95%), watermelon (92%), and grapefruit (91%). Use these ingredients in your everyday dishes, too!

#5 Form a tea habit. There is nothing like deliciously flavored water like herbal tea water. You can drink it hot or cold and with so much variety, there is a tea blend for you. From citrus, spicy, floral, or woody, you will keep yourself hydrated if you drink this more than once every day.

Once you meet the goals you set as to the number of 8-ounce glasses you decided to drink in a day, a month, or in a six-month period, go ahead reward yourself. Get some fancy coffee or spend on the things you keep going back to when you window shop. You truly deserve it!