We’re spending this month focused on hydration. In my last two blog posts, I discussed the crucial need to ensure your water is clean and looked at the importance of electrolyte balance. Today we ask the important question, how much water do you actually need to drink in a day?
When I first moved to America, my dear husband had to bribe me to drink water. Growing up in England, the drink of choice is tea. We drink it all day long, with our breakfast, lunch, and dinner, between meals and before bed. And it’s all caffeinated. If you pop round to visit someone, the kettle is on before you can blink. And we start you off young; I drank milky tea from a bottle. (It’s no wonder I never napped!) We even gave it to the dog.
The Arizona desert was a pretty rude awakening. It’s hot and dry, and you need to drink a lot. The caffeine in my (now very expensive) tea habit acted as a diuretic causing me to lose more hydration than I could retain. And I was horrified at the thought of changing my habits. When I was pregnant with our first child, the doctor asked me to drink 32oz of water for the ultrasound, and I thought I might die. As it turned out, the opposite was true.
How Much Water Should You Drink?
Mayo Clinic recommends that women drink at least eleven 8oz glasses, and men consume fifteen 8oz glasses. As a reminder, if you live in the desert or another hot climate, are suffering from vomiting or diarrhea, are pregnant or breastfeeding, you may need even more.
But if you’re like me (or these ladies) and coming to grips with the fact that you need to drink 1/2 to 3/4 of your body weight in fluid ounces of water daily, you might be asking yourself where to begin.
Eight Tips for Drinking More Water
Here are eight quick tips for making the transition a little easier.
- Figure out how much you need to drink. For example, if you weigh 150lbs, plan on drinking 75 to 112 fl oz per day. (That’s 9-11 glasses of water a day.)
- Have a container that you fill up in the morning that acts as a measuring device. I recently saw someone with a motivational water bottle like this one. It’s perfect for keeping you on track throughout the day.
- Get multiple water bottles. Fill them up and keep them ready to go. My water bottle for my morning walk is full and in the coat closet, ready for when I leave. My 32oz bottle is always brimming and by the door. It’s easy to grab when I run errands (you should never leave the house in the desert without one!) My rolling work case has two 32oz bottles in it, ready for when I’m away for the whole day.
- Drink warm water without the teabag. My mum convinced me to try this on a trip to the U.K., and it’s just about all I drink now. Because I love hot water so much, I keep a kettle at my desk. (I use this one.) I even pack hot water for day trips in one of these stainless steel insulated water bottles.
- Add flavor to your water. Herbal teas, cucumber, lemon, and berries all make your water taste like something other than just plain water. If you like tossing in those artificially sweetened flavor sachets, try SweetLeaf Sweet Drops that use stevia as the sweetener instead.
- Associate drinking water with another habit or activity. For example, if you go to the restroom and empty your tank, grab your water bottle when you return and work on refilling it.
- Keep track with an app. Most health apps like Fitbit or one of my favorites, Cronometer, can help track how much you drink.
- Exercise is a great way to stay hydrated because it pumps fluid around your body and to all your cells, but it’s also an easy way to get dehydrated. Take your water bottle with you and commit to finishing the whole thing before you leave the gym.
Listen, if I, as a tea-drinking Brit can figure out how to change my habits, I’m confident you can too! Try one or all of these tips for thirty days, and watch your vitality soar!
For most people, minor lifestyle changes will make a big difference. However, there are times when the problem runs deeper, and you need professional help. If you’ve tried to figure this out on your own, or you feel like you’re lost in a maze of information and aren’t sure which path to take, don’t give up hope.
We have a range of different approaches that will help you figure out the root cause of your dysfunction and stop the cycle of sickness so you can feel better now. Book your free 30-minute Breakthrough Strategy Session today.
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