We all know too well that we should be drinking more water, but HOW MUCH water is enough? has become my question having just completed a diet challenge in which one of the keys is to drink Young Living Slique essential oil in water throughout the day.
I must admit I can see the changes in my skin and my focus for drinking more water throughout the day and I don’t feel so ‘sluggish’, but what is the recommended daily amount?
Everyone’s daily amount is different and it depends on different factors.
Exercise: If you are exercising and sweating you will need to replace the excess fluids that you lose. The amount would be determined on how much sweat you are producing. A marathon runner would need much more water than someone doing a workout but then they would need more than someone who was working outside in the garden.
Environment: A hot environment can cause you to sweat more as the body tries to cool down by releasing moisture to evaporate off of the skin surface.
Health: If you have a health condition that affects the heart, liver, adrenal glands or kidneys you may have to take LESS water so that you don’t overload these organs. If however you suffer with or are prone to having kidney stones, urinary tract infections or bladder infections one of your ‘tools’ would be to drink plenty of water so that you can flush any excess minerals or toxins out of your system regularly trying to prevent a build up.
Illness: Fever, vomiting and diarrhea cause a large amount of fluid loss so more water consumption would be required to replace the fluid lost. Doctor’s may also recommend an electrolyte replacement to regain the delicate blood composition of mineral balance.
Pregnancy & Breast-feeding: As an essential provider of life giving nutrients to the unborn child and to a breast fed baby, mothers-to-be and nursing women need extra water so that they can provide for their child. According to the Mayo Clinic’s findings ‘The Institute of Medicine recommends that pregnant women drink 2.3 liters (about 10 cups) of fluids daily and women who breast-feed consume 3.1 liters (about 13 cups) of fluids a day.’
So the question remains…..HOW MUCH WATER?
As a general rule, half your body weight (pounds) in ounces is how much water you should be drinking each day, and if you’re exercising and sweating profusely, add another liter of water with half a teaspoon of sea salt to ensure proper electrolyte replenishment. So someone who weighs 200lbs should ideally drink 100 ounces of water (about 6 of the regular sized water bottles).
We also get liquid from our diet, fresh fruits and vegetables can be a great addition.
How can I tell if I am drinking enough water?
Your urine is a good indicator of whether you are drinking enough. Ever notice sometimes that your urine smells really strong? Or that it is a deeper yellow or amber? That is a sign of concentrated urine which is what you try to avoid. It means that you aren’t or haven’t drank enough water. Ideally your urine should be light and not smell and you should need to go to the bathroom regularly.
I find that if I don’t drink enough water over time I can also see it in my skin. It loses some of it’s elasticity. If I gently pinch some skin on the top of my hand and let go it takes a while to ‘ping’ back to how it was. Whereas if I my body is well hydrated the skin immediately ‘pings’ back to how it was before the pinch.
What happens if I don’t drink enough water?
Water is a key component of cell activity within the body and since we are made up of cells it is key and makes up for 60% of your body weight. The body uses this to help flush toxins from cells and from the body’s organs, carries nutrients to the cell and provides a moist environment for mucous membranes like ear, nose and throat tissues. Water is a major component of all cell activity.
Each day our body uses water through the skin, through the kidney, gut, and respiration (yes, as we breathe we lose water. Remember breathing on glass and drawing a smiley face in the condensation as a child?).
If you don’t drink enough water you cause a ‘water deficit’ and become dehydrated which can cause additional issues within the body.
Symptoms of dehydration are:
Mild to moderate dehydration is likely to cause:
- Dry, sticky mouth
- Sleepiness or tiredness — children are likely to be less active than usual
- Decreased urine output
- No wet diapers for three hours for infants
- Few or no tears when crying
- Dry skin
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
- Extreme thirst
- Extreme fussiness or sleepiness in infants and children; irritability and confusion in adults
- Very dry mouth, skin and mucous membranes
- Little or no urination — any urine that is produced will be darker than normal
- Sunken eyes
- Shriveled and dry skin that lacks elasticity and doesn’t “bounce back” when pinched into a fold
- In infants, sunken fontanels — the soft spots on the top of a baby’s head
- Low blood pressure
- Rapid heartbeat
- Rapid breathing
- No tears when crying
- In the most serious cases, delirium or unconsciousness
Get immediate medical care if you develop severe signs and symptoms such as extreme thirst, a lack of urination, shriveled skin, dizziness and confusion.(Mayo Clinic)
Now you know how much water you should drink each day, why and what happens if you don’t drink enough. Now you can be better prepared to support your body simply, by drinking enough water.