Thirsting for a natural way to grow your hair? Simple—drink more water.
Keeping hydrated with H2O improves skin appearance, boosts brain function, aids in digestion and weight loss and yes, helps your hair grow. The age-old question “how much water should I drink in a day?” is often and automatically answered with 8 glasses or 2 liters a day. Scientists and physicians, however, say it really all depends on your body type, activity, and health. While 8 glasses can be a good benchmark, one report found that the majority of people are drinking an average of 2.5 cups a day with no real negative consequences.
Essentially, drinking enough water allows every system in the body to function properly and since we are made up of about 60% water, it’s best to gulp generously. From skin to scalp, water offers us an easy and au naturel way to up our beauty game, especially when it comes to growing hair, keeping the scalp healthy and maintaining a luscious, touchable texture.
In fact, water accounts for almost 25% of the weight of a single strand of hair. Are you hydrating enough? Turns out, the secret to luscious, long locks is one (or two) glasses away.
Water and your hair
Drinking enough water helps energize and support hair growth from root to tip. It also helps prevent split ends and a brittle hair texture, as well as fosters a healthier scalp meaning you'll have fewer chances of developing problems like dryness, itchiness, or dandruff. Just as water hydrates and replenishes the skin, it does the same for the scalp and in turn, your lovely locks.
We naturally lose fluids throughout the day. On average, for active women and men, this can result in up to 1-2 liters of water or more, especially after intense physical activity. Ultimately, replenishing ourselves with water is a vital healthy habit we can all incorporate.
Water and weight loss
If you’re looking for a way to spur hair health and overall health, water is crucial. Forget asking yourself “how much water should I drink in a day?” in terms of measurement, and flip your thinking to “I should drink more water today” and manifest those positive thoughts. Hydrating properly has been proven to help people lose weight and even if that isn’t your goal, drinking water helps keep you feeling full and ups your metabolic rate.
Studies have found that half a litre or 17 ounces of water consumption can help boost metabolism by 24-30% for up to 1.5 hours, meaning that drinking 2 litres of water a day can help you burn more calories.
Drinking water before a meal—specifically a half an hour before—can also make a difference. This action tricks your body into feeling full helping you to eat less and feel fuller for longer. One study found that participants who drink half a liter of water before eating lost 44% more weight. So forget the pre-dinner snack (yes, we’ve all been guilty of this) and pick up a bottle of water instead.
The downsides of dehydration
Apart from sleepiness and low energy levels, dehydration can also cause weakness, low blood pressure, headaches, and an unhealthy gut. When it comes to hair growth, dehydration can actually cause hair to stop growing in extreme cases—think about it this way, the roots of the hair are the only channels by which water is supplied to the hair from the body, the thirst is real, and the solution is simple.
Water supplies the body with natural vitamins and spurs cell reproduction counteracting all these unhealthy symptoms and helping to reduce other ailments such as kidney stones.
Make water part of your routine
While some may find it hard to squeeze in more water in their daily routines, take a look at what you’re consuming instead. Could you easily swap out that soda or extra latte in the afternoon with water instead? Not only could this help you save money, but it can also help deal with that 3 PM slump. Drinking more water helps brain function, memory, and energy levels. On the flipside, dehydration leads to sleepiness and moodiness.
Drink water with every meal and instead of thinking of your intake as one big bottle intake at a time, sip water gradually throughout the day. Keep a refillable water by your desk, bedside, purse, or gym bag as a reminder to top up throughout the day.
More quick tips to up your water intake:
- Infuse water with lemon, cucumber, mint, or fruit like raspberries to add some flavor.
- Drink a glass of water after every bathroom break. After all, what goes out must come back in!
- Like everything else, there’s an app for this. Daily Water Free, for example, helps make tracking your water intake easy.
- Use a marked water bottle or filter, this will show you how much water you’ve gone through all day.
- Eat your water! Foods like grapefruit zucchini, cucumber, and watermelon have a high water content and make for great, healthy snacks.
- Use a “one for one rule”. For example, one glass of water for every glass of wine. This could help reduce hangovers too!
- If aesthetic is your thing, pick up a water bottle that suits your style. (Come on, we know you have a mug for every mood already!)
Healthy hair, healthy skin, better sleep, and more energy—all benefits of staying hydrated. If we shift our focus from the latest trends to simple, proven methods, we could all be better (and healthier too!) If you are looking for the best way to help grow your hair, drop the gimmicks and get yourself a bottle of H20. When it comes to easy, natural ways to improve your hair, water literally ensures the glass is half full.
Written by: Rosalyn Solomon