You have probably heard about 8*8 rule, meaning one needs to drink eight, eight ounce glasses of water every day. This rule, unfortunately is not based on solid and well researched information, however it is a good place to start. While it is not so easy to determine how much water an individual needs to drink every day, we know for sure that water is essential to our health and our well being.
How much water one needs to consume depends on their activity level, age, sex, and other factors such as if you are pregnant or breast feeding. We know that about 60% of our body weight is water and all of the cells and tissues in our body need water to survive. for example, water:
- Helps kidneys get rid of waste through urination
- It can help relieve constipation
- Keeps your joints lubricated
- Keep your temperature normal
Daily recommendation for fluid intake:
The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine determined that an adequate daily fluid intake is:
- About 15.5 cups (3.7 liters) of fluids for men
- About 11.5 cups (2.7 liters) of fluids a day for women
Another study States that, The recommended total daily fluid intake of 3,000 ml for men and of 2,200 ml for women is more than adequate. this is slightly lower than the recommendation above.
Please note the recommendations above are very generalized not considering an individuals weight, level of activity or the climate.
A better way to determine your water need is to consider your weight, where you live and your level of activity. in general you need to consume 0.5 ounce to 1 ounce of fluid, preferably water, per pound of your body weight. If you are very active and live in higher climates, then you need to stick to the upper limits and vice versa. For example if you weight 100 lbs (I chose this number for ease of calculation 🙂 ). you need to consume between 50-100 ounces of water every day.
Another quick and easy way to determine if you are consuming enough water or not is to take a look in the toilet bowl after you urinate. If your urine is light yellow to almost colorless with not much odor, then you are very well hydrated. if your urine is darker yellow and has odor, then you are dehydrated and you need to up your water consumption.
Is it possible to drink too much water?
Even though the majority of people and health care professionals are concerned about dehydration, it is possible, in rare cases to overhydrate. Overhydration is an imbalance of fluid. it happens when your body holds on or takes on more fluid than kidneys can excrete. So basically you can get overhydrated in two ways, if you are consuming more fluids than your kidneys can handle and get rid of, or if you have a health condition such as liver disease, kidney problems, Congestive heart failure, …., in which your body retains fluids.
Water and weight loss?
Several studies have shown how drinking water can result in weight loss. According to these studies, adults resting energy expenditure has been shown to increase by 24–30% within 10 minutes of drinking water, which lasted at least 60 minutes (1, 2).
Also studies have shown that individuals who drank more water, consume less calorie. this can be mainly because, individuals who drink more water, which has zero calorie, tend to drink less of sugary drinks (3, 4, 5)
How can you build more water consumption into your day?
Try these tips:
- Get a bottle water, choose glass bottle water or insulated stainless steel bottle water.
- Have your bottle water with you at all times
- figure out how much water you need to drink a day, using the suggestions given above
- Keep track of your water consumption during the day.
- use a journal to mark down as you finish each bottle of water
- use multiple rubber bands around your bottle water and remove one of them every time you refill your bottle
- Switch one glass of soda or cup of coffee for a glass of water.
- Drink small amounts of water throughout the day. Six glasses all at once isn’t good for you!
We all need to drink water. Our body is mostly water. Drinking adequate amount of water can help you with your weight loss goals too. Feel free to share your tips and ideas on how to stay hydrated below. as always:
Stay happy and healthy