We all know we need to drink water. Our bodies are made up of approximately 60% water, which is required for all of our vital daily functions. It is a common discussion in our clinic. How much water should I drink? The old standard is 8, 8oz glasses, or 64 ounces. However, 1 size does not fit all!!!! We come in lots of different sizes, body compositions, activity levels, etc. Not to mention other factors like, how much do you sweat? Are you a barely glistening type of person or the leave a puddle if you even think about warm weather type? A newer recommendation is half your body weight in ounces. So a 150 lb person should start with about 75 ounces of water. If you are a heavy sweater, exercise more, spend more time in the heat or just outside, that should increase. Some people get by with a little less, some need a little more. Each person needs to find what works for them.
The obvious next question is; how do I know?
The easiest...what color is your urine... the closer to clear the better. Slight tinge of yellow is ok too. More than that and you are some percentage of dehydrated. Dark yellow or worse, brown, means you are SIGNIFICANTLY dehydrated.
Muscle cramps at night or at rest is a common sign you are slightly out of balance in your electrolyte balance. This includes but is not limited to sodium, potassium, magnesium, vitamin B and other factors. If you get frequent cramps, more water is the most common solution. Then some sort of electrolyte replacement. There are all sorts of capsules, powders, drinks etc... This is worthy of its own blog....
Dry skin, dry mouth, dry eye, dry....well almost anything.
Being properly hydrated also affects other issues and fluids in our bodies. Our muscles and our nerves need water to conduct properly and get their nutrition. It is associated with blood pressure regulation. Our brains are about 75% water so... that seems a bit self explanatory.
When we talk about drinking water we mean WATER, H2O.... Not coffee, tea, soda, or any other beverage. Carbonated water has CO2 infused into it while many other carbonated drinks also have other additives. There are some discussions about them dehydrating you, but no solid evidence, yet. However, in its most basic sense, if you want more water in your body you should just drink more water without additives.
There are significantly more benefits to getting enough water on a regular [daily] basis and if you are consistent, you don't have to drink late in the evening, which may interrupt your sleep. If you are consistent day to day, you will be fine regardless if you stop around dinner or have a glass before bed.
So, let's get out the ice and carry the water cups with you this summer!
Cheers! Here is to your health!🧊🚰