8 x 8.
Your weight / 2 = # of 8 oz. glasses
How much water should you be drinking daily? How much is too much?
With so many recommendations floating around, it can be challenging to know which sources to trust. That’s what makes this question so difficult. Let’s start with this common knowledge though: Everyone is different. Of course, you probably already knew that. Our activity levels, environments, and body types all vary person to person. These factors and more all play a part in just how much water we should be consuming. A good rule of thumb is this:
Men should consume 3 Liters of total fluids/day.
Women should consume 2.2 Liters of total fluids/day.
This daily recommendation is outlined by the Institute of Medicine. 3 Liters equates to roughly 100 oz. for men and 2.2 Liters is around 75 oz. for women. If you perform strenuous exercise, are pregnant/breastfeeding, live in a hot/humid environment, live at high altitude, are attempting weight loss, or have a pre-existing medical condition, your recommended daily intake will change accordingly. Some conditions, like kidney disease and heart failure, suggest you decrease your fluid intake, while urinary tract infections and fevers require increased fluid intake. We are all unique people with individual circumstances, so asking your primary care physician to provide a personalized daily recommended intake is suggested. But the average adult living in a temperate environment can conform to these recommendations.
This recommended value for water intake includes foods you are eating as well. So if you are eating vegetables with a high water content like cucumbers, tomatoes, celery, or lettuce, then you don’t necessarily need to be chugging 75 oz. of water. Foods account for around 20% of our daily fluid intake, or the equivalent of 15-25 oz of fluid/day. Here are a handful of hydrating foods that replenish your body naturally due to their high water content.
The diet factor is what often makes water recommendations so tricky. Our daily routines are constantly changing. We may do strenuous exercise one day and then be sedentary the next. Our diets consist of varying foods from varying food groups. We are constantly adapting to the environment that we are posed in. That being said, here is my major takeaway:
Conform your daily water intake to the surroundings and conditions you are faced with.
If you spend the day out in the sun, increase your water intake. If you recently had a bout of the flu with a fever, increase your water intake. If you have been training for a half marathon, increase your water intake. Change and adapt your intake to meet the needs of your body. It’s that simple!
And fun fact: The timing of when you drink water can actually maximize your health benefits. Below is an infographic showing when and why you should be drinking water throughout your day.
Also check out some of these water fun facts I compiled! From body composition to health benefits, I incorporated all you need to know to become a water pro. Remember: drinking too much water is just as bad as not drinking enough. Speak with your primary care physician to create a personalized plan for your hydration. Have a fabulous Tuesday!