How much water should you drink?

The body loses around two and a half percent of its water every day, and this rate goes up with exercise and sport. It is essential to drink the recommended glasses of water to avoid dehydration and for the body to function optimally. It is also a well known fact that drinking the recommended daily intake of water can reduce the chances of heart disease and kidney problems. Drinking the right amount of water can also help the body regulate temperature and avoid dehydration. The symptoms of dehydration include: headaches, tiredness and loss of concentration.

How much is the recommended amount?

Most healthy adults need between two to three litres a day, and even more in the summer. The exact amount of water you require depends on your size and weight.

The CHEK Institute – a world renowned authority on health – has adopted the following guidelines for assessing how much you, as an individual, need to drink per day:

Your body weight (in kg) x 0.033 = the amount of water you should drink daily, in litres.

You can judge whether you’re drinking enough by the colour of your urine. If it’s a pale straw colour then your fluid intake is fine. If your urine is dark yellow, you need to drink more.

Beverages such as tea, coffee and fruit juices count towards fluid intake, but can have negative health benefits, it is far more healthier to stick to plain water. (Adverse health effects from substituting water with fizzy drinks, processed juices or coffee include: tooth decay, sugar addiction, caffeine addiction, insomnia and ADH!)

Maintaining your fluid levels

• Start as you mean to go on, with a glass of water when you wake.

• Find time to make yourself regular drinks during the day.

• Keep a bottle of water in your bag (a glass bottle if possible), as it’s a convenient way of providing fluid if you’re travelling or exercising.

• Get into the habit of having a glass of water with every meal.

• The sensation of thirst is not triggered until you’re already dehydrated, so it’s important to drink before you get thirsty.

• Increase your intake of fresh fruit and vegetables, as they also have a high water content.

• Consume water at room temperature. Cold water will sit in your stomach until it reaches body temperature.

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