Have you ever gone to bed thirsty and suddenly realized you haven’t had a sip of water all day? Life is so busy that although many of us know we should be drinking more water, we have a hard time remembering to do so.
There have been many conflicting studies with respect to ideal fluid intake. Factors such as your health, activity levels, the climate you live in, and whether you are pregnant or nursing affect your water requirements.
A good rule of thumb is to drink enough water to rarely feel thirsty and to produce between 1 and 2 litres of colourless or slightly yellow urine a day.
There are many important reasons to ensure we drink enough water. Did you know that water is an important component to maintaining a healthy weight? One study found that increasing water intake by 1.5 litres per day can lead to a 5-pound (2.2-kg) weight loss within one year.
Here’s a tip: when you have a junk food craving, or are about to eat a large meal, drink a glass of water instead. You will feel full quickly and consume fewer calories. Besides, it allows time to pass until the craving fades.
For Those of Us Who May Not Be Able to Drink Enough Glasses of Plain Water, Here are Some Tips to Make Increasing Your Fluid Intake More Enjoyable:
- If you are used to drinking fruit juices, try switching to half juice and half water. You will not only increase your water intake but you will also cut down on your calorie intake.
- Drink herbal tea, but be sure that the type you choose isn’t a natural diuretic, such as dandelion tea.
- If you are unsure whether you are drinking enough water, fill a 2-L bottle with water in the morning and carry it with you for the day. At the end of the day, you will know exactly how much you drank.
- Eat more fruits and vegetables. Foods such as cucumbers and watermelon are nearly 100 percent water by weight.
- Add lemon, lime, orange, or other fruits and vegetables to water to give it flavour. My favourite is orange/cucumber water.
- Keep a water bottle in all the places you sit down, such as in the car and at your desk—this will help you remember to drink it.
- Substitute at least one soda per day with a glass of water, or at least one cup of coffee per day with a cup of hot water and honey.