Fit-to-Live Health & Fitness Retreats use naturopathic medicine and the Neurological Integration System to help you optimise your health and fitness.

Whatever your aim: rehabilitate after injury or illness, weight loss, improve health and fight chronic illness, to get prepared for pregnancy, or simply to relax and re-charge.

Set in the beautiful Charente-Maritime countryside of western France, amongst forest, vineyards and sunflower fields, our aim is to enable everyone to have the knowledge and motivation to realise your full potential and perform to your best ability whether that be at work in an office environment, in your hobbies, as a parent or as an athlete.

In case of injury e.g. bruising, sprains, strains to any part of the body:

Remember PRICE

Protect from further injury - stop doing what you were doing!

Rest stay calm, lying down is usually best, wait for any spasm to subside

Ice apply anything cold for 10 minutes

Compression use a support bandage or cushions as needed.

Elevate an injured limb to reduce swelling.

Seek advice if necessary.

  Injured?

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1. Drink only when you are thirsty.

2. Drink about 250ml of water at a time.  Wait ten or fifteen minutes before drinking another 250ml if you are still thirsty.  Continue until satisfied.  This gives you the best chance of utilising your water intake most efficiently

     •     with less stress on your kidneys

          minimising loss of electrolytes

3. Try to avoid getting over thirsty as this results in you glugging back too much water at a time.

     •     some sources suggest sipping water to improve hydration.  This does work by tending to reduce the amount you drink at a time, reducing the likelihood of your brain deciding you are taking on too much, too quickly, but the sipping in itself is not essential

4.  If you tend to drink too quickly, try drinking carbonated water instead as these tends to slow down drinking and also reduce the amount you want to drink.

5.  Eat plenty of fruit and vegetables.  These are naturally high in water and also contain all these essential electrolytes, with the possible exception of sodium.  You may want to salt your food a little more in hot weather, but there is no need to overdo it - just salt to taste.

     •     too much salt intake causes your body to excrete more sodium in order to normalise levels, therefore taking water and electrolytes with it.

6.  If you are sweating excessively, consider adding an electrolyte supplement to your water.  But avoid sugar-containing supplements or drinks, including fruit juices, as sugar, causes your blood sugar to rise and one way that your body reduces that blood sugar is via increased urination, so water loss is again increased.


Water balance in the body is a complex interaction between water, electrolytes, hormones and neurotransmitters, mediated by signals from your brain and controlled, largely, by your kidneys.  The more water in your body, the higher its fluid volume, the more salt and other electrolytes it requires and the higher your blood pressure.  Your body is constantly regulating its water balance to stay at your individual optimum level.

If you take in large amounts of water, your body quickly starts to divert the water straight to your kidneys, in order to avoid your body’s fluid volume rising too much.  The problem is, that in disposing of that water, your kidneys also excrete electrolytes including sodium (from salt), potassium, calcium and magnesium.  In hot weather these same electrolytes are also being lost through increased sweating.

     •     sodium, magnesium, potassium and calcium are required by every cell in your body.  They are used to transmit nerve impulses and contract and relax muscle fibres - including those in the heart and blood vessels.

     •     salt (sodium chloride) and water are needed to maintain blood, inter- and intra-cellular fluid balance (maintaining normal blood pressure, avoiding oedema and dehydration) to make sweat, to produce hydrochloric acid for gastric digestion and to aid absorption of nutrients in the small intestine.

Excess water consumption causes the depletion of sodium, potassium, magnesium and calcium due to excess urination.  Your large intestine works hard to try to recover more of these electrolytes from the food passing through.  It can only do this by removing water at the same time.  So in fact, excess water consumption also causes drier stools with increased risk of constipation.

Good Hydration

Summer has well and truly arrived in Europe and we are immediately bombarded with advice about how to stay cool and comfortable, including drinking plenty of water.  But staying hydrated is not as simple as drinking a lot of water - in fact you can end up being less well hydrated if you drink too much!

Water balance in the body

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How to stay well hydrated in hot weather

How to stay well hydrated

We are around 50 to 70% water and a good water-electrolyte balance is essential for all body functions.  Normal body requirements for water is around 1500ml per day.  

We obtain about half of that intake by normal eating, so the additional drinking water requirement is only around 750ml.  

This requirement will be increased by hot weather, additional activity/exercise (due to increased losses through the skin and lungs by sweating and increased respiration), by excessive electrolyte intake or by diuretic loss of body fluids (e.g. due to caffeine or alcohol).  

Good hydration is very individual and cannot be generalised: the best method is to observe your urine, which should not be excessive in production and be a pale straw colour.


How much water do you need to drink