At the beginning of 2016 it is my assumption that a lot of our clientele set a New Year Resolution to be healthier. This may include working out more, eating better, taking time for oneself, etc. Well one of the questions I run across the most at this time of year is how much water should I be drinking daily? Drinking additional water is usually part of “healthier” lifestyles, and it is a common recommendation that we give our guests. The problem is that guests usually go by the standard “drink 8 glasses a day” rule and in reality it might not be a necessity for them OR they might need more then that. So I decided to break it down for everyone….hopefully this will help sort out the water conundrum.
The adult human body is approximately 55 – 75 percent water. Blood is mostly water, and your muscles, lungs, and brain all contain a lot of water. Your body needs water to regulate body temperature and to provide the means for nutrients to travel to all your organs. Water also transports oxygen to your cells, removes waste, and protects your joints and organs. Without water the average adult could only survive 3 days. So how is water lost? Water is lost through perspiration (through the skin), daily bodily functions and air travel. Also, drinking coffee, tea, soda and alcohol will have a dehydrating effect and will decrease the amount of water in your system. With all that said, how much water does your body need daily to keep itself at optimum performance?
The amount of water your body needs depends on age, sex and lean body mass. As a rule of thumb, a person should consume about 4 cups of water for every 1,000 calories they eat. To get an even more accurate amount for how much water one should drink, try this calculation: .75 x (weight in pounds) = ounces of water per day. Example: .75 x 150lbs = 112.50 oz. To get the number of cups per day, take your number of ounces (112.50) and divide it by 8. This should equal how many cups per day you should be drinking. Make sure to increase the amount of water you drink during the heat of summer and winter, and do not forget to drink more during work outs or when you have had coffee, tea, soda or alcohol. Try to drink an additional 15 ounces of water for every half hour you are out in the sun or working out or for every coffee, tea, soda or alcoholic drink you consume.
If water just is not that appealing to you try to add some lemon or lime to your water. This will not only make water more appealing but it will also help with digestion. Keep bottled water readily available and remember: Don’t wait for thirst to be an indicator. With these few guidelines, your daily water intake will increase and you will be able to live a healthier life.
~ Dana Neal: Spa Manager and Group Fitness Instructor