How much water should you drink a day

As per National Institutes of Health report, average adult human body is made of 60% water. Water is an essential part of human body. Its proportion varies according to your age, gender and lifestyle. Each and every part of our body needs appropriate daily water intake according to your age, sex, activity level and even where you live.

Every part of your body needs water for their proper functioning. Your physical performances affects if you are not hydrated properly. Insufficient water intake leads dehydration that affects your brain function and tissues.

“Drinking water is like washing out your insides. The water will hydrate your body, washes out the waste, fill you up, decrease your calorie intake and improve the function of all your tissues.”

Benefits of Drinking Water

  • Energize you for your daily activities by keeping you hydrated.
  • Human brain has 73% water content. A brain with hydration status leads more concentration, better mood and alertness.
  • Promotes weight loss. By sufficient and proper water intake at right time also helps you to lose weight.
  • Heal Headaches. Dehydration can cause headaches and migration for some people.
  • Flushes out waste of body through sweat and urine function. Higher fluid intake decreases the risk of kidney stone formation.
  • Improves skin layer by moisturizing and smoothing it. Water works best as anti-aging and wrinkle free skin treatment.
  • Acts as cure in many diseases by boosting immune system.

Daily Fluid Intake Sources

Plain water consumption is very good for body. Plain water should be at your priority to your daily fluid intake sources. Milk, tea and coffee are also contain water content but in case of tea and coffee, both contains caffeine too.

Also some fruits and vegetable like watermelon, spinach, cucumber, berries, celery, oranges, tomatoes and many more are great sources of water.

The beverages and other drinks can also count towards your water intake. However, tea, coffee, soda and other beverages increase sugar and calorie intake to your body.

All fluids that you include in your daily water intake are not just plain H2O.They just contributes to your “Total Water Intake”.

How much water to drink a day?

You always heard or read somewhere that 8 glasses per day is necessary for proper body functioning. Health organizations and many say that 2-4 liter (4-6 cups) is the best practice of healthy people. However, 8 glasses per day is a good rule to start, the amount of “Total water intake” varies from person to person.

People always asks questions when it comes to water consumption.

How much water should I/we drink a day?

Well, let me tell you that water intake requirements for human body is differ from person to person. Daily water intake is totally depends on gender, age, type of physical activities, in case of pregnancy or breastfeeding.

But what are actually daily water intake requirements for human?

The U.S. Food and Nutrition Board recommended people 2.5 liters of water consumption daily, including fluid sources. According to National Health Service (NHS), UK , people should aim to drink 6-8 glasses (1.2 liters) and in US it is advised for 8-oz glasses (1.9 liters). However, they make a note that this consumption may vary according to climate temperature.

A center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says, “There is no recommendation for how much plain water adults and youth should drink daily.” However, there is information about total fluid intake from all sources.

Recommended water intake

Let’s see how much water you should drink per day.

Recommended water intake for adults

Institute of Medicine (IOM) suggest total water intake for adults of ages 19 and more is 2.7 L per day for women and 3.7 L per day for men. This contains your overall fluid intake with drinking plain water, beverages or any fruit or vegetables you eat.

Out of all fluids, men and women get 13 cups and 9 cups of water respectively. Water consumption from food is 19 percent of total water intake.

Recommended water intake for children

Water recommendation for children depends on their ages.

  • Infants of 0 to 6 months need 0.7 L/day (23 ounce) assuming from human milk.
  • Infants of 7-12 months require 0.8 L/day (27 ounce). Consumption can be from human milk or recommended food and beverages.
  • Children with 1 to 3 years age should consume 1.3 L (43 ounce) per day.
  • Children between 4 to 8 years require 1.7 Liter as daily water intake.
  • Girls and boys with the age of 9 to 13 should drink 2.1 liter and 2.4 liter per day.
  • For ages 14-18 years, girls need 2.3 liter and boys need 3.3 liter a day.

Recommended water intake for pregnant and lactating women

Pregnant or lactating women’s daily water intake changes due to physical changes they face.  Pregnant women should aim to drink 3 liters or almost 10 cups water a day. If you are breast-feeding then increase water intake to 3.8 liters which is approximately 13 cups.

Other factors affecting water intake

You need to consume more water if

  • The climate where you live is hot.
  • Exercise is your daily routine. Add 2 to 3 cups additionally to your daily water intake.  Also make a habit to drink water in between exercises.
  • Suffering from diarrhea, fever or vomiting.
Drinking too much water

Getting too much water leads to over hydration, which breaks safe level of electrolyte in the body which cause disturbance to the brain function. Due to over-hydration, salt concentration in body becomes weaken.

Over consumption of water often occurs among athletes and labors. This often causes hyponatremia.

Know when to get hydrated
  • Whenever your body hydrates level decreases, you feel thirsty. Know the sign and drink a glass of water.
  • In high temperature, make sure you are hydrated.
  • While doing exercises, make sure you get enough fluids.
  • Make a habit to keep your bottle with you wherever you go.

Focus on fluids to get your total water intake. Apart from plain water, many fluids and fruits are greater sources of water. Avoid drinks and beverages having high sugar content and calories like soda, processed juices and alcohol.

Know that human body needs water to stay healthy, for both body and mind. Do not lower or higher your water intake. Just an appropriate water intake at the right time helps you to stay healthy and fit.

Life AgeRecommended Total Water Intake
0-6 Months (Infants)0.7 Liter a day
7-12 Months (Infants)0.8 Liter a day
Child with 1-3 Year1.3 Liter per day
Child with 4-8 Year 1.7 Liter per day
9-13 Years Girls – 2.1 Liter a day
Boys – 2.4 Liter a day
14-18 Years Girls – 2.3 Liter a day
Boys – 3.3 Liter a day
19 and more Women – 2.7 Liter a day
Men – 2.7 Liter a day
Pregnant Women3 Liters a day (10 cups)
Breastfeeding Women3.8 Liter a day (13 cups)