The benefits of hydrating your body by regularly drinking water should come as no news. But for arthritis sufferers, it has special importance. Think of your cartilage as a sponge. Every time you take a step, you put the equivalent of three times your weight on your knees and hips. That compresses your cartilage, like a sponge, squeezing out water which carries with it the nutrients that are absorbed by the synovial fluid in your knee. This continual fluid exchange is important to maintaining healthy, flexible joints.