“Do I really need to drink eight glasses a day?”
“Does tea or coffee count towards my eight glasses?”
“If eight’s good, is 9, 10, 11 even better?”
A quick search on google provides a lot of conflicting information, so it’s little wonder people are confused.
There’s no argument that water is beneficial for your health and weight loss…not to mention necessary for life.
But just how much should I drink?
The only accurate answer to this question is…
…well, it depends.
Really, I’m not passing the buck. It’s true.
You’ve got to listen to what your body tells you.
The golden rule is this: if you’re thirsty, drink. If you’re not, don’t.
Yes, it really is that simple. Quit making it more complicated than it needs to be.
Eight glasses a day?
Convention wisdom holds a one size fits all approach. It’s the eight-glasses-a-day mantra.
It’s a theory, but it is only that. In practice, there is no-one other than your good self who can decide how many glasses is right for you.
If you’re wondering, the eight-glasses theory comes from some studies done in the 1940s when it was decided that a healthy daily allowance for water was roughly 1 ml per calorie consumed. Given a 2000 calorie diet was also advocated, that worked out to 2 litres a day, or roughly eight glasses.
If you think about it though, there’s a bunch of reasons why you should hold a caveat around the conventional wisdom.
Here’s the thing. The amount of fluid each of us requires varies depending on …. the amount you exercise, the daily temperature, and what you eat, just to name a few. For example, if you’re eating lots of vegetables and fruit (think melons) you’re already getting a lot of water from your foods.
So, there is NO magic number for which to aim. Just listen to your body.
Here’s the three biggest water myths out there.
1. It’s got be water!
Much of the health and fitness community seem to believe that the eight-glasses rule excludes drinks like coffee, tea or beer.
There’s this idea that since these are diuretics, they actually increase your requirement for ‘pure’ water.
I reckon coffee, tea and alcoholic beverages can be counted as part of your water intake because alcohol and caffeine only become significantly diuretic in very large amounts.
2. If you’re thirsty it’s too late!
Possibly, the most laughable myth of all is this theory that says, “If you’re thirsty then you’re too late”.
What a joke!
It sounds to me like something a marketing director of a water bottling company would spout. Enough said.
3. Bottled water’s best!
Yeah right. Avoid bottled water if you can. Sure there’s a time and a place – when you’re in the car or after a training session – but avoid it if you can. This includes the new breed of ‘vitamin’ waters.
ALL bottled waters are terrible for the environment and are no better for you than tap water (despite what the marketing department claim on the label).
If you really don’t trust your tap water, just add a filter. Job done.
I hope that’s helped clear up any confusion surrounding your fluid consumption.
If in doubt remember the very simple rule of thumb: drink when you’re thirsty and when you’re not, don’t.
So, what are your thoughts on fluid intake? Do you have any more questions around water? Ask away, no question is too silly : )
Love etc, Avril