Daily Water Intake for Healthy Living
How much daily water intake is essential for a good health? Up to 60% of the human adult body is water. Every day you lose water through urine, breath, sweat and bowel movements. For your body to work properly, you must replenish your body’s water supply by consuming beverages or having foods that contain water. Now, the question arises how much water one should drink each day?
The U.S. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine determine that an adequate daily water or fluid consumption should be:
Daily Water Intake for Men and Women
About 15.5 cups (3.7 liters) of fluids a day for men
About 11.5 cups (2.7 liters) of fluids a day for women
These recommendations cover fluids from water, food and other beverages. Around 20 percent of daily fluid intake comes from the food you eat and the other hot and cold beverages cover the rest percentage.
We also heard the advice that you should drink eight glasses of water a day. So, is this the right fixed criteria to fulfill your body’s daily water needs? Most healthy people can stay hydrated by drinking water or other fluids whenever they feel thirsty. For some people, less than eight glasses a day might be enough. While others might need more. So, there is no single formula that fits all.
The need for water for every individual is dependent on various factors, such as your activity level, health and where you live. Here, we are telling in detail the factors that will help you to modify your daily total fluid intake:
Workout: If you do any physical activity or exercise that makes you perspire more, you need to drink extra water to balance the fluid loss. It’s vital to drink water before, during and after an exercise.
Overall Health: Your body loses fluids when you have a fever, vomiting or diarrhea. Drink more water or follow a doctor’s recommendation to drink oral rehydration solutions. Other conditions that might require increased fluid intake include bladder infections and urinary tract.
Pregnancy and breast-feeding. If you are pregnant or breast-feeding, you may need additional fluids to stay hydrated.
Climate: if you are living in a country or city where there remains hot or humid weather most time of the year then your body might lose more water because of sweat and hence you may require additional water. You may need more water if you are living in hot or humid areas. Dehydration also can occur at high altitudes.
What Water does in Human Body
- Water is needed to form saliva
- Brain needs it to produce hormones and neurotransmitters
- To keep mucosal neurotransmitters
- Regulates body temperature by sweating and respiration
- Allows body cells to grow, reproduce and survive
- Flushes body wastes
- Provides lubrication to joints
- Helps in oxygen supply to the entire body
- Aids in digestion
- Acts as a shock absorber for brain and spinal chords
What if you don’t like drinking water
You can have other beverages like juice, milk or herbal teas that are made mostly of water. Coffee and soda can also add to your regular water consumptions but try to avoid having too much sugar-sweetened drinks which may contribute to more calories than required.
How to identify if you are drinking enough?
Your fluid consumption is normal if:
You hardly feel thirsty
Your urine is colourless or light yellow
Health Benefits of Water
Our body contains around 50 to 70 percent water. Water in the body helps to keep the temperature normal, protects sensitive tissues, expels wastes through urination, bowel movements, and perspiration.
What Happens When Your Body Lacks Water?
The deficiency of water can lead to dehydration- a condition that occurs when you don’t have sufficient water to do normal body functions. Even if your body undergoes mild dehydration, you may feel no energy and get tired.
What Happens When your Body Has Excessive Water?
For a healthy adult, too much water intake is rarely a problem. Athletes sometimes may drink excessive water so that they stay hydrated during long or intense exercise. However, when you drink excessive water, your kidneys can’t expel the surplus water. It thinned the sodium content of your blood. This results in a condition called hyponatremia which can be life-threatening.
Hence most health experts follow the 8×8 rule. As per this rule, consume eight 8-ounce glasses, which equivalents about 2 litres per day.