At some point in your life, you have probably heard the advice to drink eight glasses of water a day to stay hydrated. In actuality though, how much water you should drink every day depends on several factors, such as your age, weight, any medications you may take, and your activity level. In addition, the climate where you live and the working environment (inside at a desk versus outside in the sun) can affect the amount of H2O you should really be drinking each day.
Is Drinking Water Really That Important?
Healthcare authorities around the world agree that clean drinking water is an essential component of life. Reputable institutions such as the Mayo Clinic and the Cleveland Clinic have entire pages of their websites devoted entirely to the benefits of drinking water. However, even these trusted organizations admit that there is no single formula for determining a person’s ideal fluid intake.
Hydration Impacts How Well Your Body Works
Considering that 60 percent of your body weight is made up of water, it is not surprising that every system in the body is dependent on staying hydrated. It carries nutrients into cells, flushes toxins from vital organs and provides moisture for the ears, eyes, nose and throat.
The body loses water in many different ways – through perspiration, breath and digestive functions – and this water must continually be replenished.
You may observe the following indications that your body is under stress due to inadequate amounts of H2O: :
- Dry, sticky mouth
- Sleepiness or tiredness — children are likely to be less active than usual
- Dry skin
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
- Sunken eyes
- Shriveled and dry skin that lacks elasticity and doesn’t “bounce back” when pinched into a fold
- Low blood pressure
- Rapid heartbeat
- Rapid breathing
How To Know If You’re Properly Hydrated
Most people don’t give their fluid intake much thought. But if you’re wondering how much you really need, follow these tips from the Mayo Clinic. If you are drinking enough that you rarely feel thirsty and you produce about 1.5 liters of colorless or pale yellow urine each day, it’s likely you are getting enough fluids.
To prevent dehydration and ensure your body gets the fluid it needs, switch to bottled or filtered water as your “beverage of choice.”
How Much Water Is Right For You?
How much water or fluid does the average, healthy adult really need? Assuming you are living in a temperate climate, The Institute of Medicine says that men need about 3 liters (or around 100 ounces) and women need about 2.2 liters (or about 74 ounces) each day. However, remember as stated above that your individual circumstances may dictate that you adjust the amount of fluid you need every day.
For instance, if you are engaging in long and intense bouts of exercise, like running, sports or other activities, you may need to modify your total fluid intake. Anything that causes fluid loss will require that you hydrate with more fluids. How much additional fluid you need depends on how much you sweat during physical activity, as well as the duration and type of exercise.
Pregnant women and nursing mothers should dramatically increase their fluid intake to meet the needs of the baby.
Here in Colorado, regular and consistent water consumption has a huge impact on how you breathe in our higher elevations. If you are exercising, skiing, or doing other outdoor activities, you will need to drink even more fluids to compensate.
And, as discussed, your medical history and current medications may have an impact on the amount of water you personally should drink. If you are concerned that your medications are having an impact on your hydration, be sure to speak to your doctor or pharmacist. They can help you determine the right amount of water for your health concerns.
While it might be easier to stick with the well-known formula and drink eight glasses of H2O each day, it’s important to remember that all fluids count toward the daily total. Not surprisingly, most health professionals would agree that water is better than sugary soft drinks and caffeinated beverages.
Does Quality Matter?
In a word, yes. Poor water quality not only exposes your body to minerals, contaminants and fluoride but can also taste terrible. Having access to great-tasting, high-quality, filtered drinking water through a dispenser right in your home or office can encourage you to drink more water.
No Matter How Much Water You Need Each Day, Clearly Colorado Has You Covered
There is no doubt about it, water is one of the essential building blocks of life. To ensure you are getting enough of this vital fluid, follow the guidelines above, and contact Clearly Colorado for clean, crisp, delicious drinking water delivery to your home and office. Contact us today for a free consultation and quote, and see how much better you feel when you are drinking clearly pure water from Clearly Colorado.