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MSWA Bulletin Magazine Summer 2023

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NURSING WATER, LIFE, THE

NURSING WATER, LIFE, THE UNIVERSE AND EVERYTHING! – PART 2 WHAT ROLE DOES WATER PLAY IN THE BODY? ROCHELLE BROWN MSWA NEUROLOGICAL LIAISON NURSE For the second instalment of this series, we take a deep dive into the critical daily functions of the body and the vital role water plays in each. Simply put, water helps to keep our body hydrated and in good working order. But why is hydration so important? It keeps your body temperature regulated If you are exercising or simply in a hot climate, your body is producing sweat to stay cool. If you don’t replace the water you are losing, your body temperature will quickly rise back up and you will lose important electrolytes. Water prevents constipation Many people assume that to prevent constipation you must consume foods rich in fibre regularly. While this can certainly help prevent constipation, it is not the only way. You must also stay hydrated as this will ensure your bowel movements contain sufficient water to keep things moving. If you do not drink enough water, you will likely find that you become or remain constipated. Water can help you make up for the fluid loss from certain medications Medicines that can increase the risk of dehydration are diuretics, laxatives, antacids and blood pressure tablets. 80% Making hormones and Neurotransmitter Water helps you to produce saliva Saliva might be a rather unpleasant subject, but it is necessary to help you to swallow and break down your food. Its main component is water, along with mucus, enzymes and electrolytes. Protects organs and tissue Food to move easily through the digestive tract Our digestive tract, in simple terms, is a 9m long tube. Water acts like a lubricate to ease food through. Without enough water, food moves slower and issues such as bloating and constipation can arise. Drinking a glass of water with your meals and snacks can be a great trick if you struggle to drink enough fluid to support digestion. It helps you get rid of waste products You lose a lot of nasties through your perspiration, urination and defecation, and therefore need an adequate amount of water in your system to sweat, urinate and defecate! If you become dehydrated, you will have problems getting rid of waste products from your body. Transporting oxygen to all parts of the body Water protects your tissues and joints To help maintain a full range of motion, you need to keep your joints, muscles and spinal cord well lubricated. Water helps cushion your joints and helps you stay in good physical shape. Supporting cell growth and reproduction Between 50% and 80% of the human body is made of water In part three of this series, we will focus on water’s role in: / Helping to regulate your appetite / Improving blood oxygen levels / Boosting your metabolism and your energy / Keeping your brain in good working order / Improving mood 16 17

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