Water: How Much is “Just Right?”
by Rochelle Griffin
Water. We know we need it. In fact, let’s be very clear…water is a necessity for life. It is literally the MOST essential nutrient to us. After all our body is made up of 60% water, but even so, many of us don’t necessarily crave it mentally. There are many questions that hover like a mist over the wet stuff: How much water should we drink per day? How much is too little? How much is too much? What if we don’t like it, especially when there are so many other alternatives to quench our thirst? Let’s look at each of these questions and be sure that you are on the right track for optimal health.
1. How much water should we drink per day?
The amount needed truly does vary with each individual, so I’m going to give you a general guideline. The Institute of Medicine states that, in general, men need 13 cups of water per day and women need 9 cups per day. This takes into account the typical amount of water that we lose daily via breathing, perspiring, and using the bathroom. Of course, based on how much you exercise, your environment, if you are sick, and if you are pregnant, your personal needs will change.
2. How much is too little?
Tired? No energy? Dry lips and mouth? Headaches? Dry skin patches? Decreased urination? Good chance you are dehydrated. Increasing your water intake and adding in some electrolyte drinks like Gatorade can combat mild to moderate dehydration. The best way to deal with this is to NOT let yourself get to this point! In fact, often we mistake thirst for hunger. Next time you are hungry, drink a glass of water first and see if the feeling subsides.
3. How much is too much?
Yes, there really is such a thing called water intoxication. When you drink too much water, the sodium in your blood becomes diluted and can cause many physical, life-threatening issues. The good news is that the average healthy adult doesn’t have to worry about this happening. Water intoxication is seen more amongst certain illnesses such as Addison’s disease and kidney failure or with athletes during endurance events. If you stick to the general guidelines in #1, you will be fine.
4. What if we don’t like it, especially when there are so many other alternatives to quench our thirst?
I know that there are many alternatives in the marketplace. Straight up, I’m not a fan. As a RN, I know the importance of water. Pure water is needed to help our blood transport necessary nutrients to our cells. It helps act as a shock absorber around our joints. It helps keep our vital organs running by flushing toxins out of them. Water even has a key role in maintaining our body temperature.
If you don’t find water exciting, try adding a lemon, lime, or orange wedge to your glass. Once you train your taste buds to not want the sweet stuff offered by teas and other “add-ins” available in the grocery store, you’ll wonder how you ever liked them in the first place.
I’m going to challenge you for the next 3 weeks, as it takes 21 days to form a habit. I challenge you to keep a bottle of water with you at all times. Personally, I keep a 24oz bottle with me and know that I need to drink 3 of them per day. My water bottle has become a part of me just like my iPhone has. I feel naked without either of them. I want to see you get to the point that you feel naked if you don’t have your water bottle with you. Favor: I want you to check with me on my Facebook page and tell me how you are doing. With proper hydration, my gut is that you will feel better than you ever have before. Now go grab a glass of water!
To Living Your Best Life,
Rochelle Griffin, RN BSN FDN-P
Rochelle Griffin, The Wellness Detective™, is a Registered Nurse (with over 22 years experience) & a Functional Diagnostic Nutrition™ Practitioner who has transitioned her love for fitness, health, & freedom into a 7-figure International company that now helps others live Their Best Life.
She founded Your Best Life, Inc with her husband Keith after stepping onto the edge of physical ruin with her health & the health of their young son. Having experienced a complete turn-around, they now desire to give hope & support to those who are dissatisfied with their current situation.
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