Women’s health and hydration

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Our health is our most valuable asset – not only does it determine how we feel and perform on a daily basis but long term maintaining optimal health is the key thing we can do to support longevity and prevent chronic disease. Yet often our health comes second to the daily demands of busy modern life, especially for busy women. So if you know your health deserves a little more of your time and energy, here are some of the key areas to focus on.

The most powerful step you can take towards lifelong health is to try and keep your weight as controlled as possible. The scary reality is that even without trying Australian adults are likely to be gaining weight every single year simply due to our relatively inactive lifestyles and the abundance of food we have in our lives. To avoid being a victim of gradual weight gain, weigh yourself regularly to keep on top of any weight fluctuations. Limit your alcohol intake and make sure you have at least two alcohol free days each week. Eat more vegetables and salad every day, aiming for at least 5-7 serves each day and commit to exercising at least 3-4 times each week.

It may surprise you to hear that despite Aussie’s having access to an abundance of fresh food that nutritional deficiencies are surprisingly common. Up to 1 in 4 Australian women have low iron levels, which can leave you feeling extremely fatigued, susceptible to infection and breathless. Low Vitamin D levels are also common, as more people spend less and less time in the sun. Low Vitamin D can again leave you tired, lacking energy and prone to infection. Other essential nutrients at this time include zinc for hormone production, essential fatty acids for nerve function and overall cell health and iodine to optimise metabolism.

If you then translate these key nutrient requirements into key foods to include in your diet at this point in your life, it is easy to start to tick all your key nutritional boxes. Start on the right foot by making sure that if you are a meat eater you are eating some lean red meat at least 3-4 times each week. This will ensure that you are getting the iron and zinc you need for optimal energy production. Next include omega 3 rich fish such as tuna, salmon, sardines or snapper in your diet each week as well as handful of nuts at least every second day. A regular intake of nuts and seafood will ensure that you are getting your essential fats on a daily basis. And then, once you are eating properly, remember to get out and spend a few minutes in the sun each day to get the hit of Vitamin D that you need for lifelong health and wellbeing.

ZIP_WinningAppliances_10.12.16_72Finally, the simplest step you can take towards keeping your body at its best is to make sure you keep well-hydrated. At any one time, up to 70% of us are dehydrated. Dehydration can result in us feeling tired and lethargic; our reaction time and response to stress is hampered and our cognitive capacity is reduced. In busy lives in which we are constantly trying to keep many balls in the air, not drinking enough leaves us at a daily disadvantage. There is no secret to drinking more water – it simply needs to become a daily habit. Start by always keeping a water bottle with you and aim to drink at least 2 bottles of still or sparking filtered water each day. Serve chilled water with meals and alternate alcoholic drinks with water when eating out. Or, to make your home environment conducive to good hydration, consider installing a Zip HydroTap which will mean you have easy access to filtered still or sparking water every day, which in turn means the whole family will drink more. An investment for your health is the best investment you can make.

Read how a Zip Hydrotap changed Susie’s life, here.

Susie is currently a brand ambassador for Zip. Read more about her partnership with Zip here.