While visiting San Francisco this past weekend I received a few questions from my family and friends about hot topics in nutrition. This week’s Wellness Wednesday question is inspired by the conversations I had while on my trip!
Wellness Question: How much water should I drink each day?
I’m sure you’ve heard that you should aim for 8 glasses of water each day but this is sometimes too much or too little for your body’s hydration needs. I could do a bunch of different calculations to find out your fluid needs but it varies depending on your age, activity levels, sweat, health, digestion, diet, and stage of life (pregnant, breastfeeding, elderly, etc.).The general recommendation for adequate hydration for an adult is 30-40 mL fluid per kg body weight each day. For example, a 30 year old woman who weighs 150lbs would need 2400 mL or fluid/day or around 10 cups. If you think 10 cups of water sounds difficult to drink each day don’t worry, this fluid recommendation includes the amount of liquid you are consuming from hydrating foods such as fruits and vegetables. The easiest way to tell if you are dehydrated is to monitor your urine. Ideally, your urine should be a light yellow or lemonade color and it should not have a strong odor. If your urine is dark yellow and has a concentrated smell, you’re already dehydrated and it’s time to drink some water.
Why do our bodies need water?
Between 50-70% of our body weight is fluid. Our bodies need water to perform a variety of functions that are critical to our survival including:
Dissolving and transporting substances throughout our body
Keeping our cells alive
Maintaining healthy blood volume
Regulating body temperature
Protecting and lubricating major organs and tissues
Water is one of the best drinks to have to stay adequately hydrated. It doesn’t have any extra ingredients and can help your oral health as well! Drinking water after meals or snacks can help reduce the amount of plaque build up on your teeth and gums! You can also increase your fluid intake by consuming a variety of beverages that you enjoy including juice, milk, seltzer, sports drinks, tea, coffee and soda but just remember that these beverages contribute to your total energy intake during the day. Foods can also be a great source of fluid in your diet! Try adding hydrating foods such as fruits and vegetables to your meals and snacks to help you meet your fluid needs! If you’re not a super fan of water, you can enhance the flavor of your water by infusing it with fruit, herbs, and spices. I really enjoy adding cucumber slices and mint to my water for a refreshing boost of flavor! The best way to stay adequately hydrated throughout the day is to keep a water bottle with you at all times!
When it comes to nutrition, personalization is key! There’s no one-size-fits-all approach that will magically cure all. At Wholesome Start Nutrition Therapy, you have the opportunity to share your unique wellness journey with me to develop a personalized nutrition care plan that fits your needs. Sign-up for your complimentary 15-min discovery call today!
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Disclaimer: This information is provided for educational purposes and should not be construed as medical advice. Please consult with your healthcare practitioners before undertaking any changes in your diet or adding in any supplements.