ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How much water should you drink, and why it helps you stay healthy.

Updated on March 2, 2015

Why Drink More Water?

A short while ago I decided to try living a bit more healthy. I had been noticing that I was always tired, I was constantly feeling dehydrated, even though I thought I was drinking enough water, and I had sore muscles, especially my back, quite often.

After doing some research, I came to the conclusion that I need to drink more water. Since water is essential to your body, I knew that I had to find out the best way to drink, to get the most out of water. I'm a fan of optimizing your time and efforts on any task, so instead of just guzzling water when I felt thirsty, I knew there must be a way to optimize your drinking habits to benefit your body.

What I found was some pretty strong science on proper drinking habits, the best times to drink water, how much to drink and more!

How Much Water Should You Drink Daily?

We know the common axiom 'drink 8 glasses of water a day', but I find that extremely vague and mis-informed, since I don't know how much a 'glass' is, and there is no way 8 glasses works for both someone who is small and thin, and someone who is tall and heavy. The body types are all over the place, so why would 8 glasses work for everyone?

The best way to find out how much you should be drinking is to take your weight in pounds, divide by two and that number is the number of ounces you should drink each day.

So for example, if you weighed 160lbs, this equation would work for you:

160lbs / 2 = 80 oz

80 oz = 2.37 litres

So essentially, if you weight 160lbs, you should be drinking at least 2.37 liters of water each day.

You should also factor in a few other numbers. If you're playing sports or working out, add an extra 10% to that (at least). If you're in a dry area, or experiencing dry weather (like us up in Canada during the winter!), add another 10% for that day.

If your goal is to lose weight, and are drinking more water as part of your weight-loss/fitness plan (it really shouldn't be the only part of your plan!), then make sure to do a weekly or bi-weekly weight test to see if this number should change.

Source

When Should You Be Drinking Water?

Once you know the amount of water you should be drinking daily, its not just about drinking that much in one sitting. There are essentially biological 'rules' to follow for when to drink water to maximize its power.

  1. 400-600ml At A Time
    Your body can only process up to 600ml of water per hour. This means that anything beyond that will be waste, and will pretty much just 'flow through' you. So when you're drinking, make sure to only drink less than 600ml at once. A good suggestion is to either use a 500ml water bottle, or a glass that you know is only 400-600ml, and just use that throughout the day to limit your hourly intake.
  2. Mornings and Nights
    In most cases, the longest you'll go without drinking water will be while you sleep. This is why it is very important to drink before bed and immediately after you wake up. A glass of water before bed will help keep you hydrated throughout the night, which is when your body needs to regenerate. Then, a glass first thing in the morning will help give you that boost that you'll need to start the day off by hydrating back what you lost overnight. There are also benefits of drinking a glass of warm water with lemon first thing in the morning.
  3. Before and During Meals
    Drinking around the time of meals helps in a number of ways. First, drink a glass of water within 30 minutes of starting a meal. This not only helps aid in digestion by prepping the stomach acids, it will also help fill you faster, so you eat less (which is a good thing for most people!). Drinking water during a meal will also help your body break down food better, meaning you'll also digest it better, meaning you'll get more nutrients out of it.
    Just a note, drinking a lot of water immediately after a meal doesn't help much, as your body is already working on digesting what you just ate. Give it at least 45 minutes before drinking a glass of water again.


5 Ways to Drink More Water

Now you know why you should drink more water, and when, here's the 'HOW'.

  1. Keep it near you.
    Essentially, don't let yourself forget to drink. This part is fairly easy. Find a water bottle you like, and take it everywhere with you. Make sure it stays on your desk at work, or within eyesight. Put a glass on your kitchen counter, or on your bathroom counter for a reminder first thing in the morning. Bring a bottle in your car while you drive (this one is what gets me though each day!).
  2. Find a drinking buddy.
    You can have at least two drinking buddies to remind you to drink water: one at home, one at work. Just tell them your goals, and every time they see you, they can ask if you've drank enough today!
  3. Set a daily drinking goal.
    There is a set amount of water you should be drinking each day based on your weight. The 8 glasses idea isn't really the best way to measure, so make sure you know how much water to drink each day. Then, try to hit that goal daily. It may be hard to start, but once you're on a pattern, it'll be come a habit and you'll be hitting that mark easily.
  4. Use technology.
    There are a large number of great apps to help you track your drinking, as well as send you reminders of when to drink. Think of it as a challenge or game and you'll be trying to hit your goals each day! Some of the better apps (which i'm not affiliated with at all) include: Hydro Coach (android), Water Your Body (android) and Waterlogged (iphone).
  5. Add flavor.
    Some people just don't like the flavor (or lack of) of plain water. Personally, I love the taste of tap water over bottled. So if you're one of these people, try adding flavor to the water. I'm not an advocate of those 'flavor shots', so I try to go more natural. You can use fresh lemon in the water, or cut strawberries, cucumber, mint, or a mixture of any of those. My suggestion is to get an infuser, or just mix a large pitcher of water and use it throughout the day.

Help Us Out!

How do you make sure you drink enough water every day?

See results

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)