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What do you think is more essential: Food or water? While we tend to focus a lot of our time and energy on food — deciding what to eat for lunch or make for dinner — water is essential. In fact, we can go up to 3 weeks without food but wouldn’t last more than 3 or 4 days without water.

“Hydration is necessary for survival,” explains Ronald A. Navarro, MD, Kaiser Permanente’s coordinating chief of orthopedic surgery for Southern California.” The cells in our bodies contain water and are surrounded by water. When we’re dehydrated, these cells are less permeable, which means they have trouble absorbing nutrients and removing waste.”

The benefits of hydration

When you drink enough water, you’re helping your body function at its best. You may even experience some impressive health benefits, which can include the following.

Keeping cool

When you overheat — whether it’s because of a sunny day, an intense workout, or a fever — your body produces sweat to cool down. Sweat is mostly made of water, so your body needs to stay hydrated to help you stay nice and cool.

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