How many glasses of water should you be drinking every day? This question really taps into a mix of science, intuition, and personal needs.

The idea that everyone requires exactly two litres of water daily doesn’t quite hold up when you think about the vast differences in our bodies, lifestyles, and even the climates we live in.

It’s like saying a tall athlete and a short grandma need to drink the same amount of water. It doesn’t really make sense, does it?

Intuitive thirst movement

Waiting to drink water until you’re thirsty isn’t actually a smart move. Because it might mean you’re already dehydrated.

Think of it like your body’s own late alert system. This idea has sparked a whole “drink when you feel like it” trend, or what some are calling ‘intuitive drinking’. But if you only drink when you’re thirsty, you’re basically always playing catch up on meeting your optimal hydration.

Ever notice how you feel super tired when you haven’t had enough to drink? Water helps with a bunch of bodily functions. From keeping our energy up to making sure we can properly digest food. And not getting enough water can make our bodies a bit sluggish. It’s like trying to run your car on an almost empty tank.

So, let’s not wait until we’re dreaming of oases in the desert. When it comes to being intuitive, stick with this approach for food instead.

Is 2L the magic number?

There isn’t a magic number for how much water you need every day. It’s not just about chugging eight glasses or filling up a two-litre bottle. How much water you need will depend on; your age and sex, body composition, how much you exercise, the weather, your coffee and alcohol intake, pregnancy, breastfeeding and certain medications.

You’re also getting water from the food you eat – like fruits, veggies, soup and even your morning tea counts towards keeping you hydrated. And speaking of coffee, it doesn’t actually help with hydration or give you real energy. It’s kind of like a quick fix that makes you forget you’re tired or thirsty.

Your individual needs will most likely change from day to day. As an example, if it’s a hot, humid or very cold day – you may need more water. If you had a big bowl of soup for lunch and have been less active, you might need to drink less than normal.

Are you drinking enough – or too much?

Our bodies are pretty good at letting us know what they need. A simple, yet effective, way to gauge if you’re getting enough water is to look at the colour of your urine. If it’s light, pale yellow – you’re probably well hydrated. A darker colour with a strong smell could suggest you need to drink more. If you’re constantly needing to pee, and your urine is almost as clear as water – this may indicate you’re drinking too much.

Your body needs a balance of minerals, such as sodium to keep muscles and nerves running smoothly. But when you drink more water than your body needs, you dilute your sodium levels and your body scrambles to keep the balance. This is like watering down the fuel your body runs on; it makes the system less efficient.

So, while staying hydrated is key, it’s also important not to over-do it.

Ditch the lemon water

It can be tempting to try jazz up your water with some lemon slices. But before you go squeezing a lemon into every glass, it’s worth thinking about your teeth. Those citrusy kicks can be harsh on your tooth enamel.

And despite all the ‘detox’ craze, there’s no solid proof that adding lemon to your water is going to detox your body. Don’t worry, your kidney and liver already do a great job at that. So risking your teeth for no real benefit isn’t worth it.

I ditched dieting and lost weight. Check out my YouTube video to find out how I did it.

Ways to get your water intake up

Encouraging better habits doesn’t have to be complicated. You don’t need to stick to strict rules or get fancy flavour infusers. Simply having a glass of water with each meal is an easy-peasy way to make sure you’re keeping hydrated, without turning it into a big deal.

Navigating health advice can feel like a maze. But paying more attention to your body’s cues is the golden ticket to hitting that hydration sweet spot.

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