Published September 10, 2019
Water is the most necessary thing for your survival, next only to oxygen. You can go without food for days, but not without water. It is an often debated how much water you should drink per day to stay healthy and feel good. This guide clears your doubts about how much water you should be taking every day depending on various factors.
Importance of Drinking Water
Water is the most abundant compound in your body, making up 55% to 60% of body weight in adults, 65% in children and 75% in infants. Water is required for the working of every component in your body up to the cell.
Some of the functions of water in the body are as follows:
- Maintains body temperature
- Removes waste through perspiration, urination, and bowel movement
- Protects tissue
- Lubricates and protects joints
Dehydration can affect almost all bodily functions. Even if you suffer from mild dehydration, it can drain your energy levels leaving you tired. Water is so important to your body that you can try this to improve your overall health through water fasting, drinking only water all day.
How Much Water to Drink?
The widely held norm is to drink at least 2 liters of water every day. While this is the average, your actual water intake should depend on many factors including:
- Physical activity levels
- Health condition
- Weather condition
- Your food
Thus, the overall volume of water you drink per day depends on many things including what you are doing and eating. According to research, women are recommended to drink at least 2.4 liters of water a day and men should be drinking even more. But you should drink it all in small amounts throughout the day.
Factors Affecting Water Needs
There are even more factors that affect your water needs. You should increase or decrease your water intake based on the following factors:
i. Physical Activity
If you engage in activities, whether exercises or as part of your work routine, that make your sweat, you should be drinking additional water to cover for the water lost due to sweating.
- You should drink water before, during and after exercise
- If it is intense workout and lasts over 60 minutes, you should choose a drink that can replace the minerals lost due to sweat
ii. Your Health
If you are ill or have diarrhea, your body is going to lose more fluid than normal.
- If you have fever or diarrhea, you should ask your doctor about your hydration needs
- If you have urinary problems such as tract stones or bladder infection, you should again ask your doctor for recommendations
iii. Weather Conditions
You are going to sweat more in hot and humid conditions. If you are in high-altitude location, there is an increased risk of dehydration. Make sure to increase your water intake in these conditions.
If you are pregnant or breast-feeding, you are going to need extra fluid to maintain hydration. It is recommended for pregnant women to drink at least 2.4 liters of water or fluids a day. If you are breastfeeding, you should take at least 3.1 liters of fluids per day.
v. Your Food Intake
Your daily food intake is also going to affect how much water you should take. When you take fruits and vegetables containing high amounts of water, you may not have to drink as much fluid. On the other hand, there are foods like asparagus that cause more water to be removed from your body. This will require you to drink more water.
So keep all these points in mind when determining how much water you should be drinking every day. The amount is going to vary based on all these different factors.