Welcome to day nineteen of my 30 Days of Ayurveda series! Throughout these blogs and videos, I will be sharing some upbeat thoughts and wellness tips, as well as some Ayurvedic tricks and food recommendations to help you lead a balanced life.
We all know about the importance of staying hydrated, so I thought I would share a mini ayurvedic guide on staying hydrated and what to stay hydrated with.
How much should you drink per day?
Clients often ask me how much they should be drinking across the course of a day. This is usually dependant on you as an individual and particularly on your output. For example, if you are sweating a lot from an activity such as cycling, gardening, or running, then obviously you will need to drink more than if you are sitting at your computer in an ambient room.
As a general rule of thumb, Ayurveda usually recommends drinking somewhere between six and eight mugs of warm liquid per day.
Does temperature matter ?
Temperature wise, Ayurveda suggest you take your drink anywhere between room temperature and hot. In particular, hot water promotes a good digestive function and keeps the digestive system nice and strong. The key thing to remember is this idea of room temperature upwards. This is how we see that the body can readily absorb water and take it on board more quickly than if it were ice cold. Ayurveda is not too keen on that!
In terms of monitoring how much you drink, particularly if you are sitting at a desk for most of the day, then using flasks is a really good idea. If you use an occasional mug here and there, it can be difficult to know how much you have actually drunk once it reaches the end of the day. However, if you instead drink from a flask, then you can have a far more clear idea. For example, if you consume two flasks, you know you have drunk a litre throughout the day.
Another benefit of using a flask or bottle is that they serve as a brilliant reminder. They are a very visual thing; you can load them up, and they will last much longer than multiple mug refills. You can also keep coming back to it throughout the day. I love the new Chilly’s Bottles, which work for both hot and cold drinks, as well as the all-time classic Thermos Flasks.
What should you drink?
In terms of what to actually drink, there is nothing wrong with plain water.
Not everybody likes plain water, so in order to encourage you to drink it, you may need to add some ingredients to it. For example, a couple of slices of lemon, lime or orange, or perhaps some fresh mint. The latter is really supportive for the digestive system; it boasts carminative and soothing actions, and is also a really delicious taste!
Another thing to add to your drink is star anise. I talked about star anise in my blog post covering chinese five spice, check it out if you haven’t already. Add a star anise to the bottom of your glass, fill it up with hot water, and the resulting drink is lovely for your digestive system, as well as for boosting your immunity. If you don’t like the idea of something floating around in your bottle, you can prepare your drink (such as a herbal tea) in a teapot beforehand. You can then decant it into your flask and enjoy it across the day.
Stay well hydrated in order to keep your brain cells and digestive system functioning well!
Over the next 30 days, I will be sharing even more tips and tricks to help you build some great Ayurvedic routines. Hopefully, they will soon be imbedded in your life and you can progress with them. Be sure to let me know how you’re getting on, and why not share what your favourite flask or bottle is? Find me on Instagram @anneheigham and on YouTube.