Drinking 32 ounces of water daily will help to meet your body's hydration needs, but you should at least double that amount each day. Environmental factors, your health status, perspiration and level of exercise can all affect your water consumption goal, states the Mayo Clinic.
You should drink at least 64 ounces, or eight 8-ounce glasses, of water every day, states Indiana University Bloomington. However, everyone’s requirements are different, so there’s no standard level of water consumption.
The Benefits of Water Consumption
Keeping your body hydrated enables it to function as designed. In fact, says Harvard Health Publishing, adequate water is necessary for every body system to function normally.
Water plays an important role -- even at your body's cellular level -- as it transports oxygen and nutrients that enable each cell to function. Water also helps to regulate your heartbeat, keep your blood pressure normal and ensure that your body temperature and electrolyte balance remain stable.
Your organs, tissues and joints rely on water to protect and cushion them. Water also helps to keep your digestive process smooth, flushes undesirable bacteria from your bladder through urination and helps you to avoid uncomfortable constipation.
If your body doesn't receive sufficient supplies of water daily, you could become dehydrated. Dehydration symptoms include low blood pressure, dizziness and weakness, confusion, or urine that's darker than normal. Don't ignore these warning signs, as they could lead to serious health problems.
Your Daily Recommended Water Intake
Determining your daily recommended water intake isn't as simple as it sounds, notes the Mayo Clinic. First, your body must replenish water lost through breathing, perspiration, urination and defecation.
If you live in a hot or humid environment, you'll sweat more and must replenish more fluids. A high-altitude setting can lead to increased dehydration.
Your overall health also plays a role. If you have vomiting, diarrhea or a fever, your body loses more fluids than normal. Urinary tract stones and bladder infections can result in increased fluid needs. Follow your physician's recommendations regarding increased fluid intake.
When you exercise, or do any vigorous activity that causes sweating, your body must compensate for that fluid loss. Drinking water before, during and after each workout will help. Sports drinks can replace electrolytes after intense, longer-lasting exercise sessions.
32 Ounces of Water Overview
So, how much water should you drink every day? As a starting point, begin with 32 ounces of water. The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center notes that 32 ounces of water equals one quart, four cups or 960 milliliters (ml).
Next, determine whether drinking 32 ounces of water daily meets your body's hydration needs. Indiana University Bloomington states you should probably consume a minimum of 64 ounces of water, or eight 8-ounce glasses, every day. This is the standard amount, but you want to consume that large volume of water over the course of an entire day, not all at once.
Although drinking 32 ounces of water daily sounds easy in comparison, it's probably not enough to keep your body well hydrated. So, double that 32 ounces of water every day, and you should be on the right track. Remember, water in coffee, tea and other beverages also contributes to your water intake.
Read more: Why is it Healthy to Drink Hot Water?
Health Effects of Insufficient Hydration
Using 8 eight-ounce glasses of water daily as a baseline, researchers sought to determine how many adults actually drank that amount of water each day. The clinicians followed 100 adult patients from a wellness clinic in Ontario, Canada, over three consecutive months. The study results appeared in the July 2015 edition of the Journal of Water Resource and Protection.
After compiling and analyzing the data, researchers observed that the adult patients averaged an intake of five 8-ounce glasses of water daily, considerably short of the minimum target. Although urging people to drink more water would clearly be useful, researchers also identified physiological dehydration parameters that would exist prior to the person's actual feeling of thirst.
Chronic dehydration can lead to headaches, impaired physical and cognitive performance, increased risk of certain cancers and higher risk of fatal coronary heart disease.
- Indiana University Bloomington: "Drinking Healthy Beverages: Drink More Water!"
- Mayo Clinic: "Water: How Much Should You Drink Every Day?"
- Harvard Health Publishing: "How Much Water Should You Drink?"
- The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center: "Your Fluid Totals"
- Journal of Water Resource and Protection: "Do Patients Drink Enough Water? Actual Pure Water Intake Compared to the Theoretical Daily Rules of Drinking Eight 8-Ounce Glasses and Drinking Half Your Body Weight in Ounces"