Do you know where the idea of drinking 8 glasses of water per day came from ?
Not many folks do…
Yet countless nutritionists, weight-loss experts and popular health gurus claim we must drink that much water daily.
I certainly attempted to do it.
I would drink coffee in the morning, then perhaps force down a glass of water.
By the time I had sweet iced tea with lunch, I wasn’t thirsty but would try to choke down two more glasses of water in the afternoon.
Then later, I had a glass of wine and more tea for supper, I was full – and facing 5 more glasses of water! I just couldn’t do it day in and day out.
I know many folks can do it, and I’m proud of you. But for the rest of us who wallow in guilt, there is good news.
Before I get to that, permit me reinforce the necessity of good hydration. Drinking water in appropriate amounts is needed for maintaining the organ systems. In a resting state, this is easy and can be completed in numerous ways. But in times of vigorous physical task or in high temperatures, consumption must be increased and maintained to keep the body’s core temperature from rising dangerously and to prevent dehydration.
Yet analysis has shown currently that there is no helping evidence to back the generalized notion that 8 glasses of water a day is vital to good health.
Studies have been duplicated where usual adults of both genders were compared, showing no difference in hydration status.
We aren’t walking around in a dehydrated state as a few would have us believe.
We should drink water when thirsty. It’s still the absolute indicator, and this signal is delivered from our brains when we have lost between 1 percent and 2 percent of our body’s water. This amount is not prejudicial.
Scientific studies also endorse that there is no additional benefit to the skin by drinking more water. Nor is there helping evidence that it significantly curbs appetite.
Nature intended for us to acquire much of our water from the food we consume.
Fruits and veggies are 80 percent to 90 percent water. Meat contains a fair amount, and even dry bread and cheese are about 35 percent water.
Caffeinated beverages such as coffee, tea and soda don’t necessarily assist to dehydration. Caffeine does cause a loss of water, but only a portion of what you are adding by drinking the beverage itself.
If you like to drink 8 glass of water a day, that’s suitable. But do not feel guilty if you select not to walk around with a bottle like everyone else. as an alternative, consume balanced meals and go after your thirst mechanism.
Dr. W. David Varner Jr. is a surgeon and medical consultant for Aflac. – NU
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