Winter Hydration

The Winter Series I

As the temperature drops, it is more and more tempting to stay indoors, crank the heating and cozy up with a mug of hot cocoa. Extra time in bed and avoiding the outdoors almost seem excusable at this time of the year! But just because we aren’t perspiring as much doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be paying attention to our body's need for hydration.

The recommended water intake- 1.5 to 2L of water per day- doesn’t expire with summer. Dehydration is a problem year round and can result in anything from dry eyes to migraines. Winter environmental factors, such as artificial heating, still draw moisture from your body. This is on top of our breathing, waste cycle, and regeneration of cells that require water in order to function properly. 

Interestingly, little study has been done on the effect of water on our skin. Many claim that without adequate water intake, our skin starts to suffer. This makes sense as it is our largest organ, made up of cells which are more than 60% water. Depriving our skin of water can mean dry, flaky and tight skin. Think about those poor chapped lips! This can lead to skin problems such as acne and premature aging (wrinkles like tight skin). Water also flushes toxins from the body and a healthy body is reflected in its external appearance. Whenever models offer their top skin tips, I guarantee that their tips include drinking more water.

Skin hydration tips:

To make sure your skin is truly hydrated, you will want to step up your moisturiser game. Make sure your skin sees some moisture on the outside so that it is not left to battle the elements on its own. A good Shea or Almond Butter will have the extra richness that is needed for winter.

Don’t forget the lips and eyes- these are often the first places to dry out. A good chap stick and an eye serum should help. Be wary of products containing petrochemicals as these don’t add moisture- they just coat the skin (and aren't great for the planet either!).

Try a good soak- who doesn’t love an excuse for a bath! Add some honey, powdered milk or coconut powder for extra relaxation and to help skin stay supple. Make sure it's not too hot- this can irritate the skin instead. Think about turning on your humidifier to get some moisture back into the air of your home.

Download an app. There are plenty of hydration apps that you can download for free. They send reminders to tell you how much to drink at different times of the day. Often, without realising it, hours can fly past in which you haven't drunk anything at all! These handy apps will keep you hydrated throughout the day.

Although it is tempting to reach for the java or even a hot toddy, make sure you are getting enough water in first. The good news is, tea- particularly herbal- and soups will add to your daily intake in a nice warming way without adding too many calories at the same time (as long as you don’t add sugar!) I like fresh lemon and ginger tea with a sprig of thyme.