Water accounts for up to 60 percent of the human body, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. While we get a lot of water from the foods we eat, it's important to drink plenty of water to replenish any that gets used throughout the day.
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Adults should try to drink 50 to 100 percent of their body weight in ounces of water each day, according to WebMD. This means that a 160-pound persona should try to drink 80 to 160 ounces of water a day. You'll be on the higher end if you live in a warm or dry climate or exercise vigorously for a prolonged period of time.
Generalized advice is never as good as advice given to you by your doctor. Only your doctor can determine if you should drink more water.
How to Determine Your Water Needs
- Weigh yourself in pounds to determine your weight.
- Use that number as the upper limit, then divide your weight in pounds by half.
- Convert this number to ounces. This is the minimum amount of water you should try to drink each day. For instance, a 200-pound person should attempt to drink between 100 and 200 ounces of water a day.
How to Drink More Water
- Fill a glass, water bottle or any other receptacle from which you frequently drink with water. Pour the water into your measuring cup to see how much water your receptacle holds.
- Multiply the number of cups your receptacle holds by 8 to determine the number of ounces the receptacle holds.
- Divide the number of ounces of water you should drink per day by the number of ounces your receptacle holds. For instance, if you weigh 160 pounds and have a water bottle that holds 10 ounces of water, divide 80 by 10 to arrive at 8. This means you should drink 8 full water bottles per day.
Spread your water consumption over the entire day rather than drinking a lot of water in a single sitting. This will help keep you from feeling waterlogged.
If you need help remembering when to drink, set a timer to go off every 90 minutes and drink a full glass or water bottle when the timer goes off.
Rather than using plastic water bottles, invest in a reusable bottle that you fill with filtered water. This will save both money and landfill space.
Signs You're Not Drinking Enough Water
According to Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station, these are the signs of dehydration you should watch out for.
- Excessively or chronic dry skin
- Sticky mouth and feeling thirsty
- Headaches and fatigue
- Dark yellow urine (aim for light yellow to clear)