When people think of maintaining a healthy and youthful appearance, many consider external interventions, such as skin care routines and other things you can do to your skin. These things do help, but what’s happening inside your body is equally important. For example, the foods you eat have an impact on how old you look. Hydration is absolutely crucial too.
In fact, if you’re regularly dehydrated, you’ll look older than you are, regardless of your skin care routine. Here is the best bit though—staying hydrated is one of the easiest methods of keeping yourself looking young. After all, you only need to drink a glass of water.
Let’s now look at this in more detail, including the impact of hydration on your skin and how hydration helps you stay young-looking in other ways. We’ll also look at the best ways to stay properly hydrated.
The Effects of Hydration and Dehydration on Skin
In general, maintaining good levels of hydration improves your skin overall. Studies have found that drinking enough water has a positive impact on your quality of life and will improve your skin’s physiology. In many respects, this is not surprising given your skin is about 64 percent water. What about the specifics though?
When you are dehydrated, your skin can become dry. You can also take on a flushed appearance. In other words, dehydration can make you look older than you are. You can mitigate some of these problems with a good skin care routine that includes moisturizing and exfoliating. You’ll get the best possible results, however, when your underlying skin is healthy and hydrated. Drinking water regularly achieves this.
In addition, when you’re hydrated, your skin will retain more moisture, making it look younger. Also, it will be more elastic and supple, which also makes your skin look and feel younger. In addition, supple and elastic skin reduces the appearance of wrinkles.
Staying hydrated also helps your skin to flush out impurities. Also, water improves blood flow, particularly to the skin on your face. This makes your skin clearer and more vibrant looking.
There are additional benefits too. When you’re hydrated, it’s less likely you’ll develop dermatitis or that your skin will develop infections. Other things that staying hydrated prevents include the following:
• Blotchy-looking skin
• Skin redness
In addition, staying hydrated slows the aging process in your body. This is because your cells and organs must work harder than they should when you’re dehydrated, causing them to age faster. Staying hydrated ensures that your cells and organs operate at a healthy level, which slows the aging process.
Benefits of Hydration
Staying hydrated helps to make your skin look healthier and more vibrant. Of course, this isn’t the only benefit of staying hydrated.
Here are the other main advantages of maintaining good levels of hydration:
• Weight loss - Drinking water before you eat a meal helps you to eat less while still feeling satisfied. In addition, what you drink is important. The best way to stay hydrated is to drink water, which can, in turn, help with weight loss, particularly if regularly drinking water helps you to avoid sugary drinks like soda.
• Improves your metabolism - This is another way that staying hydrated can help you lose weight and stay young looking. It particularly applies when you drink ice cold water as your body has to work a little bit harder than normal to process it. This uses more calories.
• Improves the appearance of your hair - Drinking water also helps improve your hair, making it look glossier and shinier as well as reducing frizz and making your hair easier to manage. This also helps you to look younger.
• Better muscle performance - When you are hydrated, it is easier for your body to get oxygen to your muscles. This is important to keep you feeling energized at all times, but it is particularly important when you exercise. As exercise is an important ingredient to youthfulness, this is another way that hydration helps keep you looking young.
• Improves your mood - Maintaining good levels of hydration helps balance your mood and makes you generally feel better. This is important for your mental health, but it also has an impact on how young you look. After all, feelings of positivity and happiness will translate to your appearance.
• Better memory and cognitive function - It has already been mentioned that your body is better at transporting oxygen to your muscles when you are hydrated. Your body is also better at getting oxygen to your brain too. As a result, staying hydrated improves memory and cognitive function.
• Keeps joints lubricated - Hydration helps to keep your joints in good working condition. This keeps you fit and healthy, which lets you exercise and live a more fulfilling life.
• Helps removes waste - Your digestive system works more efficiently when you are hydrated. This helps remove waste from your body quickly and effectively as well as ensuring your body can extract all the nutrients it needs from what you eat. As what you eat is important to your appearance, staying hydrated helps you look young and healthy.
• Enhances your immune system - Staying hydrated will help to prevent you from becoming ill. This includes everything from fatigue and headaches to more serious conditions.
• Reduces blood pressure - The body’s ability to transport oxygen to your muscles and brain has already been mentioned. It transports oxygen in your blood, so staying hydrated also helps you maintain a healthy blood pressure.
• Reduces stress - Staying hydrated will help you feel calm and in control. Of course, this is another way that water helps you stay young as stress makes you age more rapidly.
Signs of Dehydration
In the sections above, we’ve already mentioned that dry skin is a sign of dehydration. There are many other signs though, including the following:
• Feeling thirsty
• Having a dry mouth
• Being tired or fatigued
• Not urinating as often as you normally do
• Having urine that is yellow in color
• Having a headache
• Feeling dizzy
• Having a lack of tears
• Having bad breath
• Developing muscle cramps
If you are severely dehydrated, you will have dramatically reduced urine output, and you are likely to feel very dizzy. Your blood pressure may also drop, you may get a fever, and your heart might start beating faster. Skin elasticity is another symptom of severe dehydration; when you pinch the skin, it should quickly return to its normal position. The longer it takes, the more dehydrated you are.
What Is Proper Hydration?
We’ve all heard the advice that you should drink eight glasses of water per day. This is completely inaccurate however. It is inaccurate because there is no fixed rate that applies to everyone. Of course, eight glasses might be the right amount for some people, but it is not a hard and fast rule.
This is because the amount of water you should drink every day to stay properly hydrated depends on a range of different factors:
• Body size - Your weight and height affect the amount of water you need to drink.
• Climate - You will need to drink more in hotter climates as you are likely to sweat more.
• Physical activity - You are likely to need more water if you are physically active.
• General state of health - The amount of water you need to drink also depends on how fit and healthy you are.
• Illness - You will usually need to drink more water each day when you are sick.
• Pregnancy - Being pregnant impacts the amount of water you need to drink.
• Breastfeeding - You are likely going to have to drink more when breastfeeding.
So what is the right figure for you? According to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine, the starting point for working out how much you need to drink is the following:
• 3.7 liters a day for men. This is around 15 cups.
• 2.7 liters a day for women. This is around 11 cups.
The number of cups will vary, however, as cup sizes vary.
In addition, you will need to drink more than the above guidelines if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or sick. You will also need to drink more when exercising or if you live in a hot climate. You may also need to drink more if you live at a high altitude.
Children, however, will need to drink less than the above amounts, although the exact amount depends on their age.
How to Stay Hydrated
Without question, the best drink for hydration and to keep your skin looking young is water. Other drinks will help with your hydration, but most are not as hydrating as water, and many contain calories. Water is the best option.
Other tips for staying hydrated include the following:
• Drink when you first wake up.
• Drink about 30 minutes before every meal, including breakfast.
• Keep water with you in a reusable bottle throughout the day to make drinking water a habit.
• Infuse your water with slices of fruit to make it more interesting.
• Get an app on your phone to remind you to drink more water.
Taking these steps will benefit your overall health as well as make you look and feel younger.