I have been doing some landscaping around my house. This spring I put a great plant in my backyard, a Japanese aralia. This plant has a tropical look to it. In the summer heat, however, it quickly lets me know when it needs to be watered. It wilts and looks a bit sickly. With just a little water, however, it perks right back up.
How is this relevant? It reminds me about people, about what really happens when we need water. Our cells crave water. The right amount of water allows all the cellular processes to take place normally. Losing just a little bit of water causes cells to shrink and all the things in them to become more compacted. The machinery just doesn’t work the same.
We have had so many 100 degree days and so little rain here in North Texas this summer. Just starting your car will cause you to work up a sweat. It’s easy to fall behind on your hydration. By the time you become thirsty you have probably already lost 2% of your total body fluid. Your best protection is to try to remember to drink water frequently through the day, rather than waiting until you become thirsty. This will protect you and all of your cells, particularly through this heat.
Now, imagine yourself as that Japanese aralia. Picture your skin as those drooping leaves. Maybe the best thing you can do to maintain your normal, healthy appearance this summer is to keep hydrated. Moisturizers will help, but there really is no substitute for healthy, well-lubricated cells. Don’t wilt in this parched North Texas summer!