Having PCOS can put you at risk for a number of related metabolic conditions, including diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol, and metabolic syndrome. In addition, many women with PCOS have weight issues. Taking in sufficient fluids is an important part of maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle.
Water is a major component of every body cell, tissue, and organ. It plays an important role in almost every body function, including:
- Adequate hydration
- Temperature regulation
- Transportation of oxygen and nutrients through the blood
- Acting as a necessary component of chemical reactions
- Aid in elimination of waste through urine and feces
- Lubrication of joints
- Acting as a major component of body fluids such as mucus and tears
- Giving the cells their shape and stability
Generally speaking, people should consume approximately 2 to 3 liters of fluid each day, although fluid intake recommendations can vary based on energy intake, gender, and other factors. This recommendation also does not take into account a person’s medical condition, exercise habits, and living environment (high altitude location or extremely hot or humid areas need more). Day-to-day activities may also increase one’s need for fluid. For example, water requirements are increased when flying or during strenuous exercise or with illness and fevers. Women who are menstruating may also have additional fluid requirements.
Other Sources of Water
While water is necessary, other fluids can contribute to daily fluid amounts such as seltzer, unsweetened iced tea, hot tea, milk, soft drinks, and coffee. Regular soda and one hundred percent fruit juice also contributes fluid to our diet, but can also raise insulin levels. Try seltzer water with a splash of 100% fruit juice instead of soda for flavor without as much of a caloric punch or try one of the tips below.
Besides drinking water, we take in a lot of fluids in the food that we eat. Many fruits and vegetables have a high water content, another reason why we should eat a lot of fresh produce. Soups and smoothies also provide fluid.
Signs You Aren’t Drinking Enough
- Persistent thirst
- Dark colored urine
- Dry lips and tongue
- Tingling in arms, hands, and feet
- Increased pulse rate
Tips to Drink More Water
If you’re having a difficult time meeting your fluid amounts, here are some tips to help:
- Add fruit slices such as lemons, limes, or oranges to your water
- Carry a glass or other reusable water bottle around with you
- Use a water bottle that has a way to keep track of your ounces
- Have a competition with co-workers or friends
- Set a timer on your phone or use an app to remind you to drink up
- Include other fluids such as tea or seltzer into your day