Getting enough water every day is important for your health.
Water helps us restore fluids lost through metabolism, breathing, sweating, and the removal of waste. It helps to keep us from overheating, maintains healthy skin, and is necessary for proper digestion.
Water lubricates the joints and tissues. It is a component of synovial fluid, which lubricates and cushions the joints and cartilage surrounding them, keeping bones from rubbing together.
It also helps cartilage keep its sponginess.
Proper hydration can improve the production of synovial fluid, reduce inflammation and maintain the shock-absorbing properties of cartilage.
Cartilage is a tremendously strong and flexible fibrous tissue.
In a joint, cartilage covers bones' surfaces where they meet to form the joint.
This joint or articular cartilage has two purposes:
Synovial fluid is the thick liquid that lubricates our joints and keeps them moving smoothly. It’s on all of our joints, including our knees, shoulders, hips, hands, and feet.
When the joint is at rest, the synovial fluid is stored in the articular cartilage much like water is stored in a sponge. When the joint bends or bears weight, the synovial fluid is squeezed out, helping to keep the joints lubricated and healthy.
How much water you need depends on your size, weight, activity level, and environment temperature.
A healthy body is designed to send thirst signals when the body becomes depleted of fluids.
As we age, however, the body’s regulation of fluid intake and thirst decline. Other factors, like impaired mental ability, may impair our perception of thirst. Other people may also voluntarily limit drinking due to incontinence or difficulty getting to a bathroom. People who are ill and infants may not have an adequate sense of thirst to replete their fluid needs.
So people who cannot rely on thirst or other usual measures may wish to use other strategies to ensure they drink enough water. For example, aim to drink a large glass of water with each meal and snack or fill a small water bottle four times daily and sip throughout the day.
Keep in mind that you don’t just have to drink your water though. Many raw vegetables and fruits such as watermelon contain a high water content.
While drinking more water may not treat joint pain, it can help keep your joints healthy.
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