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Tasty Tuesday by Anna Grindeland, RD, CD: Are you drinking enough water?

Anna Grindeland, RD, CD

Your body is made up of 75% water—

You have probably been told at one time that you should drink 8x8oz glasses of water daily (that is a total of 64oz). But depending on your sex and body size, you may need more or less:

On average, women should be drinking 91oz of water per day, men 125oz

That’s between 11-16 cups of water per day:

OR, 7-10 12oz water bottles:

OR, 4-5 24oz water bottles:

Some individuals with heart or kidney problems are required to drink less water by their doctor. If this applies to you, make sure you know your limit and get at a minimum, 4 cups of water daily. Water should not be replaced with caloric drinks like fruit juice, soda, or vitamin water.

Listen to your body….

What your pee can tell you:

Our kidneys balance the fluid in our bodies, and with other waste products, are excreted through urine. The more concentrated your urine is, the darker in color it will be. Urine should be a very pale yellow when you are well-hydrated.

What your teeth can tell you:

Our gums are highly sensitive to dehydration. To keep your mouth and teeth healthy, it is important to drink enough water and eat a healthy diet.

What your skin can tell you:

Have you tried pushing a finger into the skin on your arm to see if you are hydrated? If the imprint of your finger stays white for a long time, you are probably dehydrated. In the same way, give yourself a small pinch on the arm. If the skin quickly returns to normal, you are better hydrated than if the pinched skin takes longer to return to normal.

Tips for drinking more water:

  1. “Hate” water? --Try mineral water, or sweetener-free flavored water. Because these flavored waters contain flavorings that may be acidic, excessive amount can be hard on your tooth enamel. So, for every glass of flavored water, have one of plain water.
  2. Make it fit—buy a water bottle that fits in your cup holder, purse, gym bag, or lunch bag. If it’s easier to take with you, you are more like to do it.
  3. Straws --Ron McDonald has known for a long time that wide straws make people drink more—why not use the same concept to trick yourself into drinking more water?
  4. Eat more watery foods—In addition to being very high in vitamins and minerals, Fruits and vegetables contain a large amount of water. By weight, lettuce is about 90% water, and bananas are about 75% water.
  5. Spread it out—Break up your water throughout the day. A good way to start is drink 1-2 glasses of water first thing in the morning. Have one glass before you eat a meal, and one after. Keep water by your desk, in your car, and work area so it is available all the time.
  6. Home flavored water can be a tasty and interesting twist on regular water. Check out these interesting recipes from Reader’s Digest Magazine.

For more health tips and news, check out Whitman Hospital and Medical Center’s website, Health Resources.

Have a Tasty Tuesday!

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The information found in the Health Library is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice nor does it represent the views or position of WHMC. Readers should always consult with their healthcare provider for diagnosis and treatment, including for specific medical needs.