7 Health Effects Of Staying Hydrated

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Hydration may seem like a boring health tip, but it's a very important one. You may not realize that hydration has more health benefits than glowing skin and excellent digestive health; it's also great for many other organs and bodily functions.

"Water plays a large role in how our bodies function and the health of our metabolism," Nicole Lund, MS, RDN, a clinical nutritionist at NYU Langone’s Sports Performance Center, tells Bustle. "Hydration status can affect everything from temperature regulation and heart rate to digestion, muscle cramps, and cognitive function."

If you manage to keep a higher level of hydration for a week, you'll start to see real and tangible benefits, from your internal health to your muscular function and even your brain health.

What does that extra hydration look like, you ask? "Generally, healthy people should aim for 30-50 ounces of water, at consistent intervals throughout the day — not all at once," Dr. S. Adam Ramin MD, a urologist and medical director of Urology Cancer Specialists, tells Bustle. So if you glug a Mason jar's worth of water before you go to bed, you might quench your thirst, but you're not getting the maximum hydration your body craves.

If you're dehydrated, you'll likely know it pretty quickly — think, headaches, fatigue, and thirst — but hydration's benefits can be less obvious. Here's what you might find if you maintain excellent hydration levels for a week.