Staying Hydrated for Health and Wellbeing

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The health and wellbeing benefits of ensuring your levels of hydration and nutrition are hugely beneficial to know. It’s the difference between a healthy lifestyle and a mundane one.

This week sees nutrition and hydration awareness week and we’d like to take the opportunity to educate Health Shield members and associates with the importance of both.

The aim of the awareness week is to promote the 10 key characteristics for good nutritional care, the minimum standards for good nutrition, the sharing of good practices and much more.

It goes without saying that food and drink are a vital part of life. What you eat and drink plays a huge part in your mental and general health and wellbeing. Healthy eating is a hot topic and we are constantly surrounded by media reports and advertising promoting a healthy diet, but why? The benefits to your general health and wellbeing don’t need to be pointed out, you instantly feel better after a healthy meal rather than the come down from a high sugar intake or a takeaway. Your body image feels better and exercise is much easier.

By following a healthy diet and having a good nutrition intake, you also decrease your risk of heart disease and cancer. Blood sugar is another health issue that is affected by the foods you consume. Certain foods like those high in fat like white bread, fruit juice and ice cream give a sudden rush of sugar and over time this can lead to diabetes. Foods that cause a slow release of sugar include complex carbohydrates like oatmeal and brown rice that are much better for your overall health.

Proper nutrition doesn’t mean a specialist diet or eating small portions, it means a balance. You could get completely technical and look at the percentage of protein, carbohydrates, fats etc. that you should be consuming, but it doesn’t have to be that in depth. You don’t have to be an expert, just know the basics of good food.

By picking up the right foods off the supermarket shelf, and it doesn’t need to be expensive, everywhere does their own brands, you can make a big improvement to your lifestyle. These include:

  • Boost of mood and energy
  • Decreased risk of diabetes, depression, cancer and arthritis
  • Improve your life longevity
  • Look after your heart, your bones, your teeth and weight

Did you know men and women should drink 2 – 2.5 litres of water a day respectively?

Health Shield research suggests that you’re more likely to find a young male at the water machine during the working day, with males under 35 drinking more than 5 glasses a day.

It is important to remain hydrated – ensuring you do so is not just about exercising with a bottle of water nearby. Water, or some form of fluid, is vital to the healthy running of your body. Water is however, the recommended source for your hydration needs. It contains no sugar and no calories or additives. If you don’t enjoy water as much, try adding a slice of lemon or lime to give it some natural flavour instead of fruit squash which can often be full of sugar.

Dehydration is important as it can lead to long-term health problems as well as short term. Your heart is the primary area that is affected. It causes a drop in blood pressure, can cause heart attacks and even strokes.

So to celebrate hydration week, why not look into your drinking habits and see where you can make a positive change.

If you are a member of a Health Shield Health Cash Plan, you can access a wide range of health and wellbeing benefits within the mywellness section of the Members’ Area, where you can pick up some useful hints and tips to improve your diet and nutrition. If you are a prestige member, don’t forget you can receive up to £100 towards your yearly gym membership, swimming lessons, exercise classes or personal trainer to help improve your overall health and wellbeing.

If you are an employer and are looking to implement a Health Shield Health Cash Plan in your company to improve your employee health and wellbeing, visit our employer page to find the right plan for you.


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