How Much Water Should You be Drinking?
You’ve probably been told, “Drink eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day.” This advice isn’t necessarily true. The recommended amount can vary depending on your age, gender, and whether or not you’re pregnant. A Dietary Reference Intake Report stated that men ages 19 and up should be consuming around 13 cups a day and women ages 19 and up about 9 cups a day.
Here are the Benefits of Drinking Water
To encourage you to get in those nine to thirteen cups a day, here are 10 ways drinking water can benefit you:
Cut calories and help with weight loss
Drinking water causes your stomach to feel fuller, which can reduce hunger, and the likelihood to overeat. Studies have shown that people who drink two to three glasses of water before meals consume fewer calories and have better weight loss results than those who did not. Replacing high calorie drinks for water is also an easy way to cut calories.
Detox your body
Water flushes out toxins in your body through your sweat and urine. This can reduce the risk of things such as kidney stones and urinary tract infections.
Healthier, better-looking skin
Water moisturizes the skin while preventing and treating scars, breakouts, and wrinkles. It does this by eliminating toxins in the body and restoring skin tissues, making skin look fuller, healthier, and younger.
Treat and prevent headaches and migraines
Drinking water can help prevent and relieve headaches and migraines, which are indications of dehydration. So, the next time you feel a headache or migraine coming on, start drinking water.
A common sign of dehydration is fatigue. Drinking water helps your body function more efficiently, thus making you feel less tired. Next time you’re feeling tired, reach for a glass of water!
Prevent muscle and joint pain
Aching muscles and joints can be a sign of dehydration. Drinking more water can keep the aches and pains away, and prevent your muscles from getting tired during a workout.
Alcohol dehydrates your body. For those nights you might’ve had too much alcohol, drink two to three glasses of water before going to bed to prevent getting a hangover. If you forget to do this, or didn’t drink enough water before going to bed, an easy way to rehydrate and get rid of a hangover is drinking water.
Aids digestion and constipation
Drinking the water helps the body break down food properly and helps the functioning of the gastrointestinal tract. This is key to digesting food and preventing constipation.
Improves mood and ability to think
When your body is properly hydrated, you will find yourself in a better mood and able to think easier.
Tips on How to Drink More Water
Nine to thirteen cups of water a day can seem like a lot. Be sure to spread your glasses of water out throughout the day. If you don’t, you will be peeing it out before your body sees any of the benefits. This is because your body can only absorb so much water in an hour. Here are some tips to make those glasses of water seem less daunting:
- Drink a glass of water when you eat, between meals, and before, during and after working out.
- Drink water when you go out to eat. This is a good way to cut calories and also save money!
- Invest in a reusable water bottle. This can be one that motivates you to drink more, infuses your favorite fruits, filters your water, or one you simply like. Carrying a water bottle around with you is a great way to make sure you’re keeping hydrated.
- Add some flavor. If you get bored with drinking plain water, add a lemon or lime wedge. Adding one of these can also have some added benefits!
- Download an app. There are apps out there where you can log the amount of water you consume each day. These apps can also create goals and set up reminders for you during the day to make sure you’re keeping hydrated. It doesn’t get much easier than that!
Keep in Mind
While drinking water has a number of benefits, a condition called hyponatremia occurs when you drink too much water and prevents the body from balancing sodium levels. Symptoms of hyponatremia include confusion, irritability, and even seizures. If you experience any of these symptoms, seek medical attention.