On Sunday morning I woke up feeling stiff, heavy and super tired, despite a full night’s sleep. I laid in bed and reached to the left for my phone. The simple act of extending my arm made my upper back ache and feel tight. I laid there in the mess of pillows and blankets until the dogs allowed for no more rest, and jumped me out of bed (like the gang they are).
As I lumbered down stairs to start the tea kettle, I quickly remembered why I felt like shit. I wasn’t hung over. I hadn’t stayed up all night. I wasn’t in a car accident or boxing match the day before. I hadn’t even worked out hard or had great sex. #bummer
I was just dehydrated.
I remember that evening laying in bed, falling asleep, thinking, I’m thirsty – but too tired to get myself water. I remember earlier in the morning, racing to SF to grab groceries at the ferry building farmers market and I thought, I should grab some water – but I wanted to avoid traffic. When I got home from the farmers market I thought, Oh, I want some tea – but after I put this food away first…
And on it goes, right?
My goal this spring is to stay hydrated as best I can – which means all day, everyday. I am lucky enough to live in a place where fresh, clean water is at my disposal – so what the fuck is my reasoning for not staying hydrated? It’s partially why I found myself going back to the topic of ceremony and living with the seasons.
I’m too busy, too tired, too [ insert any bullshit here ]. I’d like to let the business, tiredness and bullshit go for a while and to just drink some fucking water to feel good.
One thing I was recently reading about, is how some teas (including herbal) are diuretics and can, in some circumstances, dehydrate. This is pretty counterintuitive for an avid tea drinker, like myself. I always figured I was doing good by adding herbs to my waters as much as possible. But it does make sense; herbs are powerful foods, just like – well, food. It’s well known that caffeine is a diuretic, but some common herbs are as well, meaning they induce salt and fluid loss through the urine. Take rosemary, peppermint and dandelion – they are all diuretics, some more intense then others depending on the body and state of mind. I used to like to drink rosemary-infused water before bed (to help aid in digestion), but then I would need to pee forty times in the middle of the night. I would wake up feeling totally exhausted, with semi-wrinkled skin from the loss of fluid in the night.
I found that slightly adjusting the time of day I was sipping the tea was really helpful with my skin health. If I drink peppermint or rosemary tea around 3pm – 4pm, I’m not affected in the morning, plus my skin stays clear and hydrated. If I drink a black tea (I adore Yorkshire Gold tea), more then a few times a week (even small cups), my skin gets dry, sunken and almost itchy feeling. I find that my skin doesn’t really like caffeine in general, especially in tea form (something to think about when you see those trendy coffee scrubs for the face and body. Give ours a shot instead).
Beauty products aside, I’m getting to the root of hydration and it’s importance. It might sound trivial, but water use is sacred. Our bodies crave fresh, clean water – and our herbs want to support that basic need.
Find your water, find your herbs – and the beauty comes as a sweet little side effect.
Are you better then I am about staying hydrated?
What are your tricks or yummy water recipes?