Water is precious for humans to stay alive. Almost 60% of the weight in your body is made of water. Drinking water helps in many of our body functions. It helps digest the food you eat, carry essential nutrients to your body cells, flush the toxins from your organs, and cushion the joints in your body. If you don’t drink enough water, you will become dehydrated. Severe cases of dehydration can lead to dizziness, confusion, and even seizures. But how much water should I drink a day? That’s a common question everyone has. We will help you find the answer in this article.
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The health benefits of water should i drink a day
In chemistry, water is known as H2O, a compound that is made of hydrogen and oxygen. Water is the main chemical component in our body. It makes up about 50% to 70% of your body weight. Our lives depend on water to survive. All the organ, tissue, and cell in the human body needs water to work correctly. Drinking water helps in our body’s proper function in many ways. For example:
- Drinking water keeps our body temperature stays normal.
- Protect sensitive tissues.
- It helps with the proper digestion of the food we intake.
- Lubricates the joints and cushions them, which helps us to move correctly.
- It eliminates waste and harmful components that accumulate in our body through urination, perspiration, and bowel movements, helping us stay free from diseases.
What will happen if we don’t drink water?
Every day the human body loses water through your breath, sweat, urine, and bowel movements. For our body’s proper function, we must replenish its water supply by consuming fruits, vegetables, and beverages containing water.
On a hot day, if you’re outside or doing some heavy exercises that make you sweat a lot, you’ll need to drink lots of water to stay hydrated so that your body doesn’t experience the lack of water. Lack of water in the body can lead to dehydration. When you don’t have the necessary amount of water in your body to carry out normal functions, it is a condition that occurs. Even if the dehydration is mild, it can drain your energy and make you feel tired. The lack of water can cause you to throw up, have diarrhea, or even run a fever.
Many people claim that if you don’t drink water and stay hydrated throughout the day, your energy levels and brain functions will suffer.
Plenty of researches have been made to support this.
- One research made in women showed that a fluid loss of 1.36 percent after exercise decreased mood and concentration levels.
- On the other hand, it increased the frequency of headaches.
- Another research was done in China on 12 university students. During the investigation, it was found that not drinking water for 36 hours had significant effects on focus, attention, fatigue, reaction speed, and short-term memory.
- Even mild dehydration can affect physical performance and cause it to reduce. Clinical research was done on older, healthy men. They reported that just a 1 percent loss of body water reduced their muscle strength, power, and endurance.
About 60% of our body weight consists of water. Losing 1% of body weight might not seem like a lot and might not make that much difference. But this loss of water is significant. It usually happens when you’re sweating a lot or in a hot place and not drinking enough water. If we don’t drink water to compensate for that loss of water, it may cause health problems.
But if you have any particular type of condition such as heart failure or kidney disease, you may need to control your water intake. Talk to your doctor and find out what’s right for you.
Factors on which how much water one should drink every day depends
Water helps many of the organs in our body to function correctly. So, it’s essential to drink the right amount of water that your body needs every day.
Studies over the years have produced various recommendations. A person’s individual water needs depend on many factors. These factors include your size, your health, where you live, etc. It can depend on how active you are, how much exercise you do, how hot the weather is, and many other things.
A single formula doesn’t fit everyone. Like adults, children’s need for water depends on many things. Like their age, how much they weigh, their gender, etc. Other items such as how healthy and active they are and what the climate is like where they live also play a vital role in these cases.
Knowing more about your body’s need for water will help you figure out how much water you need to drink each day. Your doctor can help you choose what’s right for you.
How much water should I drink a day?
How much water should one drink a day? It’s a simple question. But it has no easy answer. No fixed amount is right for everyone. Sometimes people also ask how much water does an average, healthy adult living in an exact temperate climate needs? The U.S. Institute of National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine determined that an adequate daily water intake should be:
About 3.7 liters or 15.5 cups of water a day for men.
- About 2.7 liters or 11.5 cups of water a day for women.
The following recommendations include the intake of water and food and other beverages that contain water. About 20% of the proposal is covered by the food we intake daily. The rest can be covered by drinking water and other beverages regularly.
But then a question arises, what about the advice to drink eight glasses a day? You’ve probably heard the advice that drinking eight glasses of water a day will cover up the necessity of water in your body. That’s a reasonable goal and easy to remember. But like we have said before, a single formula doesn’t fit everyone.
Usually, healthy people can stay hydrated by drinking water or other fluids only when they feel thirsty. For some people, consuming less than eight glasses of water a day might be efficient. But other people might need more.
It would be best to modify your total amount of water intake based on the factors mentioned below to maintain your body’s water balance. They are:
The environment where you live:
You will need to drink more water if you live in hot, humid, or dry areas. The weather that’s hot or humid can make you sweat and lose a large amount of water in your body. You may require additional fluid to cover that loss of water. If you don’t, you may suffer from dehydration, which will make you feel tired. You’ll need more water if you live in the mountain areas that have a high altitude. Dehydration can occur at places of high altitudes as well.
If you are used to drinking caffeinated beverages regularly, you might lose more water through extra urination. You should drink more water if your diet is high in salty, spicy, or sugary foods. If you don’t eat hydrating foods high in water like fresh or cooked vegetables and fruits, you need to drink as much water as possible.
The temperature or season:
You may need to drink more water in warmer months than you do in the cooler ones due to sweat. In warmer seasons, the sun’s hot temperature might make you feel thirstier faster than usual, especially spending a lot of time outdoors.
Exercise and how active you are:
If you are a busy working person during the day and do a lot of walking or standing around, you’ll need more water than someone who sits around the whole day. If you are engaged in any intense activities or do heavy exercises that make you sweat a lot, you need to drink a lot of water to cover water loss in your body. It’s essential to drink water before, during, and after exercises and stay hydrated.
Your overall health:
Health problems can cause you to lose the necessary amounts of water in your body. Water loss in the body happens more than usual when you have a fever, diarrhea, or vomiting problems. If you have an infection that causes fever or loss of fluids through vomiting or diarrhea, you have to drink more water to compensate for water loss in your body. If you have problems like diabetes, you will also need to drink more water. Medications like diuretics can make you lose water as well. You can also take a doctor’s recommendation to drink oral rehydration solutions. Other health conditions like bladder infections, urinary tract stones require increased intake of water as well.
- Pregnancy and breast-feeding: If a woman is pregnant or breast-feeding, she might need additional fluids to stay hydrated.
Side effects of drinking too much water
Drinking too much water is not a big problem for healthy and well-nourished adults such as athletes. They may drink too much water to prevent dehydration during long or intense exercises.
But in the cases of ordinary people, when you drink too much water, your kidneys can’t get rid of the excess water. The sodium content in your blood becomes diluted, leading to hyponatremia, which can be life-threatening. Drinking too much water may cause harm to your kidneys as well, which may cause problems in your urine such as feeling pain when urine comes out, blood flow along with urine, which may cause blood loss and tiredness.
We should intake the proper amount of water, which our body needs to maintain balance and function properly.
How do I know that I’m drinking enough water?
You can use the signs mentioned below to make sure you are drinking enough water. Your intake of water is probably adequate if:
- You rarely feel thirsty.
- Your urine is colorless or light yellow.
- You have better digestion. Drinking the right amount of water helps you maintain proper digestion.
- You have fewer health problems like vomiting, diarrhea, kidney diseases, etc.
You can take your doctor or dietitian’s help to determine the amount of water that’s right for you to intake regularly. Also, to prevent dehydration and make sure your body has the right amount of water it needs, it’s a good idea to drink a glass of water:
- If you are thirsty,
- Before, during, and after exercise.
- Each meal and between meals.
Is drinking water the only option for staying hydrated?
No, you don’t need to depend on drinking water only to meet your water needs. You can stay hydrated by:
- Eating different foods can also provide a significant portion of your needs for water. For example, fruits and vegetables, such as watermelon and spinach, are almost 100% water by weight. If you add fruits and vegetables to your daily intake, it will provide you with essential minerals besides water, which your body needs.
- Liquid beverages such as milk, juice, and herbal teas are composed mostly of water. Caffeinated drinks like coffee and soda can contribute to your daily water intake as well.
- But be a little alert while taking sugar-sweetened drinks. Sugary drinks like regular soda, energy or sports drinks, and other sweet drinks usually contain many added sugar, which may provide more calories than needed. Overtaking these may cause more harm than good to your health instead.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS) of water should i drink a day:
What can I take besides water to cover the needs of water in my body?
Answer: You can intake fruits such as lemon, orange, watermelon, and vegetables like spinach, which are 100% of water by weight, to cover the demand for water in your body.
Is over drinking water a bad thing?
Answer: Unless you do an intense workout regularly, then over drinking water can cause health problems, like overweight, pain in the kidneys, blood along with urine, etc.
We hope this article’s information helped you find out how much water you should take a day to stay healthy and active.