An optimal water intake extremely important for your overall health and athletic performance.
Obviously, everyone that currently doesn’t drink enough water, will a series of benefits by increasing his or her intake to ideal levels.
So In this post, I want to teach you how much water you need exactly and what kind of water you should be consuming.
As you probably know, water comprises over 60% of your total body weight and every part of your body requires water. Here are some examples:
– Water is important for the body’s detoxification mechanism
– Water helps regulate your body temperature
– Water protects the brain and functions as a shock absorber
– Water keeps your joints and ligaments lubricated and allows them to move freely.
It should be obvious that staying hydrated is important and dehydration will slow you down both mentally and physically.
But how much water should you actually drink then to stay hydrated?
Interestingly, the question should really be how much should you eat and drink because many foods (such as fruits and vegetables) contain quite a bit of water. In fact, one-fifth of our water intake comes from the food we eat.
With this in mind, how much water should you be drinking every day?
You will often hear the traditional recommendation of 8 glasses of water per day, but the problem is that optimal water intake will differ depending on your weight and activity level. This is why the Institute For Medicine actually recommends you let thirst be your guide.
I know this sounds really vague but our bodies are actually very good at recognizing dehydration and once this happens you will feel thirsty.
You probably still prefer a specific value that you can target just to make things a little more tangible. In this case, a good target value is approximately 2.7 liters (or 3/4ths of a gallon) of water for women and 3.7 liters (or a gallon) for men per day.
This should be your baseline to shoot for every day.
Now, if you are like me and exercise regularly then, of course, you need to add some additional water to that baseline, simply because you sweat more than the average person. A good recommendation is to add 1 liter per hour of exercise, to make up for the additional sweating.
Ok, now that we know how much water you need the next question is…
What kind of water should you be drinking?
This will heavily depend on where you live. In developed countries tap water is usually fine, but research has shown that even there it can sometimes be contaminated with all kinds of pollutants, like bacteria and heavy metals.
Many people know this and drink bottled water instead, but the problem is that bottled water especially when it comes from plastic bottles also contains quite a few chemicals, mostly from the plastic leaking into the water. Also bottled water can be quite expensive when you drink a lot of it.
What’s the solution?
Filtered tap water. Home water filters are getting better and cheaper by the year. The key to judging them is the number of dissolved solids they leave in the water, which can be measured in terms of “parts per millions.”
To use them you simply put water into the top container of the filter, which then slowly passes through the filtration mechanism and comes out pretty much chemical free. A good water filter will produce clean water for many months before needing a change of filters.
So to wrap up this post:
1. Let thirst be your guide and shoot for 2.7 liters if you are a women and 3.7 as a man.
2. If you exercise regularly drink around 1 liter per hour of exercise on top of that.
3. And if you are concerned with chemicals in the water home water filters are a great way to get rid of them without spending too much money.