Are you drinking enough water? We hear a lot about how important it is to stay hydrated and that’s because water serves several important functions, including helping to regulate body temperature, and supporting the body’s natural detox process. And when you’re not properly hydrated, it negatively impacts everything from mood to memory to energy levels.
But how much water do we really need to drink? Many of us have heard that it’s eight glasses a day, or 64 ounces, and that’s not far off. The actual recommendation is 93 ounces a day for women, 125 for men. And about 20% of that comes from water-rich foods, like fruits and veggies, so women need to drink about 75 ounces of water a day on average and more when you’re exercising or outside on a hot day.
If you’re concerned about getting the proper amount of water, these are some ways to boost your intake:
- Replace sugary drinks - Swap sodas, sweet tea, sports drinks and beverages that have sugary add-ins with water.
- Set reminders - Let your phone help you remember to down water throughout the day.
- Use a water bottle - Fill it up and set it on your desk to remind you to drink up.
- Have water with meals - If you down a glass of water with each of your three meals, you’re on your way to staying well-hydrated.
- Spruce it up - If you’re not a fan of plain water, add a splash of 100% fruit juice or cucumber, lemon, lime, mashed berries, ginger or mint as a healthy add in.
- Drink water when you wake up - Start your day with a glass of water before breakfast or coffee.
- Make festive ice cubes - Give your ice cubes some flair by adding some juice, berries, or other fruit to each cube in your ice tray.
- Make it bubbly - In terms of hydration, it doesn’t matter whether you’re a fan of still or sparkling water. If you’re worried about the carbonated water eroding tooth enamel, the American Dental Association says sparkling water has about the same effect on enamel as regular water. Just be sure to choose a carbonated water without artificial sweeteners and flavors.