How much water should you be drinking?
posted by The Live Better Team | September 12, 2016
When you think of what is inside your body, you probably think of your bones, heart and other major organs. You may not immediately think of water as an essential part of your body system, but water makes up about 60 percent of your totally body weight, making it the body’s principal component.
Every system, organ and cell in the body needs water to function properly. Water flushes toxins out of major organs, regulates body temperature, lubricates joints and carries nutrients to your cells. According the a study done at the The University of Tennessee, thirst is the number one trigger of daytime fatigue. The brain is approximately 85 percent water and proper brain function requires sufficient water. Even a mere 2% drop in body water can result in headaches, fuzzy short-term memory and difficulty focusing.
You know that staying hydrated is important, but how much water do you really need? You’ve probably heard about the “8 glasses a day” rule, but is that enough? While how much water an individual needs daily can vary greatly, the Mayo Clinic has given some basic guidelines.
The Mayo Clinic recommends that for an average man living in a temperate climate the adequate intake is about 13 cups (3 liters) of water daily, and 9 cups (2.2 liters) for women. For reference, the standard water bottle is half a liter. To follow the Mayo Clinic’s suggestions, the average man needs to drink the equivalent of at least 6 water bottles a day and the average woman needs to drink around 5 bottles.
There are many factors, however, that can increase how much water your body needs to function properly. If you live in a hot environment or at a high elevation, workout regularly or are pregnant or breastfeeding, you need to drink more water.
Proper hydration is an important part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Dehydration can lead to serious health problems such as heat injury, seizures and kidney failure. Extreme dehydration can lead to death. If you or someone you know experiences extreme dehydration, seek medical attention immediately.
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a medical professional. You should always consult your doctor before making decisions about your health.